RTX ransomware (virus) - Recovery Instructions Included

RTX virus Removal Guide

What is RTX ransomware?

RTX ransomware is developed to extort money from innocent users

RTX ransomwareRTX ransomware creators make money by blackmailing victims and taking their data hostage

One of the most notorious cyber-attacks is ransomware attacks because of the damage they can cause to victims. The developers of these malicious programs target home users and big corporations too. The bigger the target, the bigger the reward. This type of malware is created to infiltrate users' devices and lock all of the personal files inside them. The icons get also changed to white pages, so users immediately notice that something is wrong.

RTX ransomware appends files with the .RTX extension, the attackers' contact details, and a unique ID generated to the victim is also included. So if a file was previously named picture.jpg, after encryption is complete, it would look like this – picture.jpg[hoti2020@tutanota.com][uniqueID].RTX. Shortly after the encryption process is complete, a ransom note is created on the machine which informs users about their current situation.

The file is named Read-this.txt and includes the attackers' contact information and some other instructions. This particular strain belongs to the Void ransomware family which was first detected at the beginning of April 2020. The family can also be known by the name of VoidCrypt because it demands payment in cryptocurrencies[1] and might also mine crypto using victims' devices.

NAME RTX
TYPE Ransomware, cryptovirus, data locking malware
MALWARE FAMILY Void ransomware
ENCRYPTION METHOD AES + RSA
FILE EXTENSION .RTX
RANSOM NOTE Read-this.txt
DISTRIBUTION Infected email attachments, peer-to-peer file sharing platforms, torrents, malicious ads
FILE RECOVERY It is almost impossible to recover the data if users do not have backups or the decryption keys were not leaked; we provide third-party solutions that work in some cases
ELIMINATION Scan your machine with anti-malware software to eliminate the virus safely, keep in mind that this will not recover the locked files
SYSTEM FIX You can avoid windows reinstallation with ReimageIntego maintenance tool, which can fix damaged files and system errors

Ransomware distribution methods

Most people are completely uneducated about ransomware attacks and how they work. There are a lot of ways you could have gotten infected by it. Let's start with the most common one – installations of “cracked” software. Many people do not have money to buy expensive software licenses so they resort to using third-party distributors that provide them for free. The thing is, these websites are rarely regulated, so they are full of PUPs and malware, people do not even notice how they get infected.

Another popular method threat actors use is email. Typically, the malicious code gets introduced by an executable file (.exe) that may have been in a zip folder, embedded within Microsoft Office document’s macros,[2] or disguised as fax or other viable attachment. You should only open attachments that you were expecting to receive. If it was a surprise, double-check with the person through another platform.

Of course, ransomware can also be disguised as a legitimate program also, that users download themselves intentionally. It is important to do your research before installing anything and make sure it is safe to do so. Find reviews and inspect the site, try to find the official source. The most obvious way ransomware gets inside is by software vulnerabilities.[3] That is why it is very important to keep your operating system and applications always updated, as these patches can be very important and fix serious security problems.

The ransom note

RTX virusRTX virus is particularly devastating for those who do not have their data backed up

The full ransom note Read-this.txt reads as follows:

All Your Files Has Been Encrypted

You Have to Pay to Get Your Files Back

1-Go to C:\ProgramData\ or in Your other Drives and send us prvkey.txt.key file

2-You can send some file little than 1mb for Decryption test to trust us But the test File should not contain valuable data

3-Payment should be with Bitcoin
4-Changing Windows without saving prvkey.txt.key file will cause permanete Data loss

Our Email:hoti2020@tutanota.com

in Case of no Answer:Arenono@protonmail.com

We always strongly advise against contacting the attackers, as many ransomware victims have come forward and reported that after paying the ransom they never heard back. You should keep in mind, that cybercriminals are not required to keep their word, so there are no guarantees that after you pay the money, you will get your files back. You run the risk of losing your files and your money too.

The attackers like to use various scare tactics to make you act without thinking and send the payment as soon as possible without trying other solutions. In this guide we will show you how you can remove the malicious files, try to recover the files, and fix the damaged operating system, so you would need to reinstall Windows completely.

RTX ransomware removal

There are plenty of ransomware-type infections which self-destroy after they are finished with data encryption. However, this is not the case for all malware, and it well might be that RTX ransomware will continue running in the background in order to lock the incoming data. Besides, it might drop several modules that could be designed for some other malicious activities, such as cryptojacking.[4]

Therefore, the first step you should do after being infected with ransomware is to remove it with powerful security software. You can perform a full system scan with an updated anti-virus application and it should delete all the related files and other items automatically. There are plenty of tools that recognize

In some cases, ransomware might interfere with security software operations in one way or another (for example, it can immediately shut it down). Accessing Safe Mode with Networking can bypass this issue:

Windows 7 / Vista / XP

  1. Click Start > Shutdown > Restart > OK.
  2. When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 button (if that does not work, try F2, F12, Del, etc. – it all depends on your motherboard model) multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
  3. Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.Windows XP/7

Windows 10 / Windows 8

  1. Right-click on Start button and select Settings.
  2. Scroll down to pick Update & Security.
  3. On the left side of the window, pick Recovery.
  4. Now scroll down to find Advanced Startup section.
  5. Click Restart now.
  6. Select Troubleshoot.Choose an option
  7. Go to Advanced options.Advanced options
  8. Select Startup Settings.Startup settings
  9. Click Restart.
  10. Press 5 or click 5) Enable Safe Mode with Networking.

Once your computer reboots, your desktop background should be black, with “Safe Mode” markings in all four corners of the screen. Launch SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes and perform a full system scan. Your machine should be clean after that, and you can then restart it to go back to normal more to proceed with the next step.

Third-party solutions to recover .RTX files

Having your files encrypted by ransomware can be particularly devastating, especially if data consists of important work documents or schoolwork. As already mentioned, paying criminals is not recommended – these people can simply not be trusted. They might never send you the required key, especially when there are no contact details provided (they might not know who you are – usually crooks provide a personal ID they can identify victims by).

Thus, you should instead rely on other methods. There is no guarantee they will work for you, but you should definitely try it.

  • Download Data Recovery Pro.
  • Double-click the installer to launch it.
    RTX ransomware
  • Follow on-screen instructions to install the software.Install program
  • As soon as you press Finish, you can use the app.
  • Select Everything or pick individual folders where you want the files to be recovered from.
  • Press Next.
  • At the bottom, enable Deep scan and pick which Disks you want to be scanned.Select Deep scan
  • Press Scan and wait till it is complete.
  • You can now pick which folders/files to recover – don't forget you also have the option to search by the file name!
  • Press Recover to retrieve your files.Recover files

Repair the damaged operating system

Malware, such as ransomware, can negatively impact Windows system files, damaging them during the infection period. New ransomware strains are more prone to bugs due to malware creators' inexperience, so it can mess things up really quickly. Unfortunately, security software is not capable of fixing damaged system components, which might later result in system crashes, errors, and other issues. If you are experiencing similar problems after RTX ransomware removal, you should proceed with the following solution to repair damaged system files:

  • Download ReimageIntego
  • Click on the ReimageRepair.exe
    Reimage download
  • If User Account Control (UAC) shows up, select Yes
  • Press Install and wait till the program finishes the installation processReimage installation
  • The analysis of your machine will begin immediatelyReimage scan
  • Once complete, check the results – they will be listed in the Summary
  • You can now click on each of the issues and fix them manually
  • If you see many problems that you find difficult to fix, we recommend you purchase the license and fix them automatically.Reimage results

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix virus damage using Reimage Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage Intego has a free limited scanner. Reimage Intego offers more through scan when you purchase its full version. When free scanner detects issues, you can fix them using free manual repairs or you can decide to purchase the full version in order to fix them automatically.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Reimage, try running SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

Getting rid of RTX virus. Follow these steps

Isolate the infected computer

Some ransomware strains aim to infect not only one computer but hijack the entire network. As soon as one of the machines is infected, malware can spread via network and encrypt files everywhere else, including Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices. If your computer is connected to a network, it is important to isolate it to prevent re-infection after ransomware removal is complete.

The easiest way to disconnect a PC from everything is simply to plug out the ethernet cable. However, in the corporate environment, this might be extremely difficult to do (also would take a long time). The method below will disconnect from all the networks, including local and the internet, isolating each of the machines involved.

  • Type in Control Panel in Windows search and press Enter
  • Go to Network and Internet Network and internet
  • Click Network and Sharing Center Network and internet 2
  • On the left, pick Change adapter settings Network and internet 3
  • Right-click on your connection (for example, Ethernet), and select Disable Network and internet 4
  • Confirm with Yes.

If you are using some type of cloud storage you are connected to, you should disconnect from it immediately. It is also advisable to disconnect all the external devices, such as USB flash sticks, external HDDs, etc. Once the malware elimination process is finished, you can connect your computers to the network and internet, as explained above, but by pressing Enable instead.

Find a working decryptor for your files

File encryption is a process that is similar to applying a password to a particular file or folder. However, from a technical point of view, encryption is fundamentally different due to its complexity. By using encryption, threat actors use a unique set of alphanumeric characters as a password that can not easily be deciphered if the process is performed correctly.

There are several algorithms that can be used to lock data (whether for good or bad reasons); for example, AES uses the symmetric method of encryption, meaning that the key used to lock and unlock files is the same. Unfortunately, it is only accessible to the attackers who hold it on a remote server – they ask for a payment in exchange for it. This simple principle is what allows ransomware authors to prosper in this illegal business.

While many high-profile ransomware strains such as Djvu or Dharma use immaculate encryption methods, there are plenty of failures that can be observed within the code of some novice malware developers. For example, the keys could be stored locally, which would allow users to regain access to their files without paying. In some cases, ransomware does not even encrypt files due to bugs, although victims might believe the opposite due to the ransom note that shows up right after the infection and data encryption is completed.

Therefore, regardless of which crypto-malware affects your files, you should try to find the relevant decryptor if such exists. Security researchers are in a constant battle against cybercriminals. In some cases, they manage to create a working decryption tool that would allow victims to recover files for free.

Once you have identified which ransomware you are affected by, you should check the following links for a decryptor:

No More Ransom Project

If you can't find a decryptor that works for you, you should try the alternative methods we list below. Additionally, it is worth mentioning that it sometimes takes years for a working decryption tool to be developed, so there are always hopes for the future.

Create data backups to avoid file loss in the future

One of the many countermeasures for home users against ransomware is data backups. Even if your Windows get corrupted, you can reinstall everything from scratch and retrieve files from backups with minimal losses overall. Most importantly, you would not have to pay cybercriminals and risk your money as well.

Therefore, if you have already dealt with a ransomware attack, we strongly advise you to prepare backups for future use. There are two options available to you:

  • Backup on a physical external drive, such as a USB flash drive or external HDD.
  • Use cloud storage services.

The first method is not that convenient, however, as backups need to constantly be updated manually – although it is very reliable. Therefore, we highly advise choosing cloud storage instead – it is easy to set up and efficient to sustain. The problem with it is that storage space is limited unless you want to pay for the subscription.

Using Microsoft OneDrive

OneDrive is a built-in tool that comes with every modern Windows version. By default, you get 5 GB of storage that you can use for free. You can increase that storage space, but for a price. Here's how to setup backups for OneDrive:

  1. Click on the OneDrive icon within your system tray.
  2. Select Help & Settings > Settings.
    Go to OneDrive settings
  3. If you don't see your email under the Account tab, you should click Add an account and proceed with the on-screen instructions to set yourself up.
    Add OneDrive account
  4. Once done, move to the Backup tab and click Manage backup.
    Manage backup
  5. Select Desktop, Documents, and Pictures, or a combination of whichever folders you want to backup.
  6. Press Start backup.
    Pick which folders to sync

After this, all the files that are imported into the above-mentioned folders will be automatically backed for you. If you want to add other folders or files, you have to do that manually. For that, open File Explorer by pressing Win + E on your keyboard, and then click on the OneDrive icon. You should drag and drop folders you want to backup (or you can use Copy/Paste as well).

Using Google Drive

Google Drive is another great solution for free backups. The good news is that you get as much as 15GB for free by choosing this storage. There are also paid versions available, with significantly more storage to choose from.

You can access Google Drive via the web browser or use a desktop app you can download on the official website. If you want your files to be synced automatically, you will have to download the app, however.

  1. Download the Google Drive app installer and click on it.
    Install Google Drive app
  2. Wait a few seconds for it to be installed. Complete installation
  3. Now click the arrow within your system tray – you should see Google Drive icon there, click it once.
    Google Drive Sign in
  4. Click Get Started. Backup and sync
  5. Enter all the required information – your email/phone, and password. Enter email/phone
  6. Now pick what you want to sync and backup. You can click on Choose Folder to add additional folders to the list.
  7. Once done, pick Next. Choose what to sync
  8. Now you can select to sync items to be visible on your computer.
  9. Finally, press Start and wait till the sync is complete. Your files are now being backed up.

Report the incident to your local authorities

Ransomware is a huge business that is highly illegal, and authorities are very involved in catching malware operators. To have increased chances of identifying the culprits, the agencies need information. Therefore, by reporting the crime, you could help with stopping the cybercriminal activities and catching the threat actors. Make sure you include all the possible details, including how did you notice the attack, when it happened, etc. Additionally, providing documents such as ransom notes, examples of encrypted files, or malware executables would also be beneficial.

Law enforcement agencies typically deal with online fraud and cybercrime, although it depends on where you live. Here is the list of local authority groups that handle incidents like ransomware attacks, sorted by country:

Internet Crime Complaint Center IC3

If your country is not listed above, you should contact the local police department or communications center.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from RTX and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes

How to prevent from getting ransomware

Choose a proper web browser and improve your safety with a VPN tool

Online spying has got momentum in recent years and people are getting more and more interested in how to protect their privacy online. One of the basic means to add a layer of security – choose the most private and secure web browser. Although web browsers can't grant full privacy protection and security, some of them are much better at sandboxing, HTTPS upgrading, active content blocking, tracking blocking, phishing protection, and similar privacy-oriented features. However, if you want true anonymity, we suggest you employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN – it can encrypt all the traffic that comes and goes out of your computer, preventing tracking completely.

 

Lost your files? Use data recovery software

While some files located on any computer are replaceable or useless, others can be extremely valuable. Family photos, work documents, school projects – these are types of files that we don't want to lose. Unfortunately, there are many ways how unexpected data loss can occur: power cuts, Blue Screen of Death errors, hardware failures, crypto-malware attack, or even accidental deletion.

To ensure that all the files remain intact, you should prepare regular data backups. You can choose cloud-based or physical copies you could restore from later in case of a disaster. If your backups were lost as well or you never bothered to prepare any, Data Recovery Pro can be your only hope to retrieve your invaluable files.

About the author
Julie Splinters
Julie Splinters - Anti-malware specialist

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