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Remove Sfile2 ransomware (Tutorial) - Improved Instructions

removal by Linas Kiguolis - - | Type: Ransomware

Sfile2 ransomware – a newly-emerged threat that loads a sequence of commands to encrypt files and append the .sfile2 extension to each of it

Sfile2 ransomware virus

Sfile2 ransomware, discovered and investigated by Amigo-A,[1] is a member of the file-encrypting viruses that has shown up in the cybersphere in the middle of February 2020. Security researchers believe the hackers to be experienced ones as they have developed a completely new ransomware virus and did not copy other creators. When .sfile2 files virus hacks the targeted Windows computer, it scans the entire system via an executable to find encryptable content.

Once such components are discovered, the malware uses the advanced encryption standard[2] to lock up the data and attach the .sfile2 appendix to each filename. After that comes the ransom note named !!_FILES_ENCRYPTED_.txt in Notepad. Crooks claim that Sfile2 ransomware has encrypted all the data of each host existing in the network. As a way to solve this problem, criminals recommend writing to them via gtimph@protonmail.com email address if the victims want to restore their files.

For providing proof that the decryption key is an existing one, hackers advise users to send them 2 different encrypted files in the ZIP archive for free decryption. Afterward, the ransom note states that the victim will surely receive the decryption tool after the payment is made. However, this rarely appears to be true.

Name Sfile2 ransomware/.sfile2 files virus
Type Ransomware virus/malware
Discoverer Amigo-A was the first one to announce about this discovered infection on the Twitter social platform
Encryption The ransomware virus employs the Advanced Encryption Standard and locks up all types of files and documents that are discovered on the infected Windows computer system. After that, all the filenames end up with the .sfile2 appendix
Ransom note The ransom message comes named !!_FILES_ENCRYPTED.txt and is provided to the victims right after the encryption process. Criminals urge users to make ransom payments in order to receive the decryption tool and discuss all ransom-related matters by cooperating through gtimph@protonmail.com email address
Monetary demands Even though the ransom message does not come with particular ransom demands, the crooks are likely to urge for payment anywhere from $100 up to $2000 and even more. Also, these people will likely ask for a cryptocurrency transfer such as Bitcoin, Monero, or Ethereum
Distribution If you have received a ransomware infection on your Windows computer, the virtual parasite might have appeared after opening a malicious attachment clipped to an email spam message, loading an infected file from a peer-to-peer website, downloading cracked software with malicious payload in it, etc.
Elimination You have to get rid of the ransomware virus as soon as possible as the more you wait, the bigger the damage can get. Employ reliable antimalware software for the elimination process
File recovery We do not recommend contacting the cybercriminals and paying them as there is a big chance of getting scammed. Instead of taking such risk, go to the end of this page and find out what type of data recovery alternatives are there
Fix software If you have discovered any corrupted areas on your Windows computer system, you can try repairing them with the help of software such as Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego

Sfile2 ransomware can appear on the Windows computer system after opening an infected attachment that was clipped to a phishing email message, clicking on a malicious file that was loaded on a peer-to-peer[3] network such as The Pirate Bay, through malvertising, and other techniques.

Once Sfile2 ransomware infiltrates the targeted device, it loads a sequence of commands to make sure that it operates properly. First of all, the malicious string ensures that it is executed every time the computer system is started. After that, it might try to disable your antivirus program in order to avoid getting detected.

Sfile2 ransomwareSfile2 ransomware is a virtual parasite that can modify keys in the Windows Registry which might lead to computer problems and errors

Furthermore, Sfile2 ransomware fills the Task Manager with malicious executables some of which scan the entire system and look for encryptable components. When such files are discovered, the malware activates the AES cipher and all of the documents are no longer properly accessible and include the .sfile2 appendix.

Sfile2 ransomware targets all types of files and documents that are found on the infected Windows computer system and the remote devices that are connected to the machine at the moment. Such components can be images, word documents, audios, videos, multimedia, archives, various databases, and other types of content.

Then, Sfile2 ransomware deletes the Shadow Volume Copies of encrypted data by running specific PowerShell commands to prevent users from employing other types of recovery software. The elimination of Shadow Copies is even mentioned in the ransom note:

Your network has been penetrated.
All files on each host in the network have been encrypted with a strong algorithm.
Backups, replications were either encrypted or wiped. Shadow copies also removed.
DO NOT RESET OR SHUTDOWN – files may be damaged.
DO NOT RENAME OR MOVE the encrypted and readme files.
DO NOT DELETE *.sfile2 files.
This may lead to the impossibility of recovery of the certain files.
To get info how to decrypt your files, contact us at:
gtimph@protonmail.com
To confirm our honest intentions we will decrypt few files for free.
Send 2 different files with extension *.sfile2. Files should not contain essential information.
Files should be inside ZIP archive and mailed to us (SUBJ : your domain or network name).
It can be from different computers on your network to be sure we decrypts everything.
The procedure to decrypt the rest is simple:
After payment we will send you decryption software.
Don’t waste time, send email with files attached as soon as possible.
It’s just a business. We absolutely do not care about you and your deals, except getting benefits.
If we do not do our work and liabilities – nobody will not cooperate with us. It’s not in our interests.
If you will not cooperate with our service – for us, it’s doesn’t matter. But you will lose your time and data, cause just we have the private key.

Sfile2 ransomware provides a text message that is full of threatenings not to reset the computer system, not to rename, delete, or move the encrypted files as it might result in total data destruction. However, these are only sentences that are supposed to really scare people and rush them to make a decision towards purchasing the decrypter.

Sfile2 ransomware developers outline that it is just business for them and they only care about their own needs. However, these people still claim to provide the decryption tool to the victims as this is a way to cooperate. Of course, this can be a trick to hurry up the ransom transfer and you might be left with no recovery software at all.

The main reasons why you should not pay the hackers that are hiding behind Sfile2 ransomware is that these people might provide you with a fake tool, might give you no tool at all, or could urge for more money after you pay the starter price.

Even though Sfile2 ransomware does not provide any information about the ransom demands, all of the matters will likely be discussed via email. However, cybercriminals are likely to urge for a price anywhere between $100 and $2000 and, of course, ask for some type of digital currency transfer such as Bitcoin, Monero, or Ethereum.

Sfile2 ransomware is a cyber threat that brings unwanted modifications to the computer system some of which can be spotted in the Windows Registry section. If the malware modifies or deletes crucial keys in this directory, your computer and software might start slowing down, crashing, and facing various errors. 

Sfile2 virus.sfile2 files virus - ransomware that travels through email spam, peer-to-peer networks, infected ads, and files

Another thing that Sfile2 ransomware can truly be capable of is downloading other malware forms to the device. Ransomware viruses are known for the infiltration of such parasites that have the mentioned capabilities:

  • Trojan. Steals private information, banking data, overuses CPU power, damages software.
  • Cryptocurrency miner. Mines cryptocurrency by overusing the computer's resources.
  • Spyware. Spies on the user's private information, online activities, slows down your device.

The best way to avoid such type of malware installation is to remove Sfile2 ransomware from your Windows computer. This can be done by employing reliable antimalware software and loading the program for a full malware scan. Additionally, if any virus damage is found on your device, you can try fixing it with a tool such as Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego.

If you are having trouble with Sfile2 ransomware removal and in case this parasite has removed all system restore points, the only option left for you is to boot your machine in Safe Mode with Networking. This function might allow you to deactivate the cyber threat and diminish the malicious changes that it has applied to your computer.

Also, if you are looking for ways to restore files that were encrypted by Sfile2 ransomware, paying the crooks is not necessary and is definitely not recommended. Instead of taking risks to get scammed, travel to the end of the article and pick out the most suitable data recovery technique that might work for your case.

Email spam, malicious files, and p2p sites are often full of ransomware

Security experts from LesVirus.fr[4] have found out that ransomware developers like to hide their malicious products in attachments that come together with email spam messages. Crooks pretend to be from reliable organizations such as FedEx or DHL to create a reliable look to the potential victims.

However, every time you receive an unexpected email, check the sender and better contact the company via mobile phone to figure out if they truly have sent you such a message. Furthermore, do not open any attached files before performing a full malware scan on them to make sure that they are not infected.

Additionally, the ransomware-related payload gets distributed through peer-to-peer networks that are filled with software cracks and malicious downloading links. Stop using these types of sources for getting your products and services, and change them into reliable and official ones.

Other sources where malware can be promoted are unsecured websites where you can find a lot of advertisements that come filled with malicious links. Avoid visiting any pages on the Internet that are marked as unsafe to proceed with and employ a reliable antimalware tool that will alert if something malicious is waiting for you.

Advanced removal guidelines for Sfile2 ransomware virus

.sfile2 files virus is a complex threat measuring to other possible infections such as browser hijackers or adware programs. Regarding this fact, you should not try to eliminate the virtual parasite by yourself as you will take risks of making mistakes.

As an alternative for Sfile2 ransomware removal, we recommend employing automatical antimalware software that is capable of dealing with such threats. Also, search the computer for possible damage with software such as SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes. If these programs find anything, you can try fixing the altered areas with the help of Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego.

If you are having a difficult time to remove Sfile2 ransomware from Windows, the malware might be blocking your antimalware software or initiating other malicious changes to prevent its removal. Regarding this fact, try rebooting your computer in Safe Mode with Networking and diminishing all the suspicious modifications.

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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.

To remove Sfile2 virus, follow these steps:

Remove Sfile2 using Safe Mode with Networking

To perform the restoring process of your computer system and properly deactivate the malicious processes that were brought by the cyber threat, you should boot the device in Safe Mode with Networking. Here are the instructions:

  • Step 1: Reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Networking

    Windows 7 / Vista / XP
    1. Click Start Shutdown Restart OK.
    2. When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
    3. Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list Select 'Safe Mode with Networking'

    Windows 10 / Windows 8
    1. Press the Power button at the Windows login screen. Now press and hold Shift, which is on your keyboard, and click Restart..
    2. Now select Troubleshoot Advanced options Startup Settings and finally press Restart.
    3. Once your computer becomes active, select Enable Safe Mode with Networking in Startup Settings window. Select 'Enable Safe Mode with Networking'
  • Step 2: Remove Sfile2

    Log in to your infected account and start the browser. Download Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego or other legitimate anti-spyware program. Update it before a full system scan and remove malicious files that belong to your ransomware and complete Sfile2 removal.

If your ransomware is blocking Safe Mode with Networking, try further method.

Remove Sfile2 using System Restore

If the ransomware virus did not remove all of the restore points on your Windows computer, you can try bringing it back to its previous state by enabling the System Restore feature as shown in the below-provided guide:

  • Step 1: Reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Command Prompt

    Windows 7 / Vista / XP
    1. Click Start Shutdown Restart OK.
    2. When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
    3. Select Command Prompt from the list Select 'Safe Mode with Command Prompt'

    Windows 10 / Windows 8
    1. Press the Power button at the Windows login screen. Now press and hold Shift, which is on your keyboard, and click Restart..
    2. Now select Troubleshoot Advanced options Startup Settings and finally press Restart.
    3. Once your computer becomes active, select Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt in Startup Settings window. Select 'Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt'
  • Step 2: Restore your system files and settings
    1. Once the Command Prompt window shows up, enter cd restore and click Enter. Enter 'cd restore' without quotes and press 'Enter'
    2. Now type rstrui.exe and press Enter again.. Enter 'rstrui.exe' without quotes and press 'Enter'
    3. When a new window shows up, click Next and select your restore point that is prior the infiltration of Sfile2. After doing that, click Next. When 'System Restore' window shows up, select 'Next' Select your restore point and click 'Next'
    4. Now click Yes to start system restore. Click 'Yes' and start system restore
    Once you restore your system to a previous date, download and scan your computer with Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego and make sure that Sfile2 removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

Guide which is presented above is supposed to help you remove Sfile2 from your computer. To recover your encrypted files, we recommend using a detailed guide prepared by 2-spyware.com security experts.

If your files are encrypted by Sfile2, you can use several methods to restore them:

Use Data Recovery Pro for restoring some of your files.

If the file-encrypting threat has made an impact on your files and documents, you can try restoring them back to their previous states with the help of this software.

  • Download Data Recovery Pro;
  • Follow the steps of Data Recovery Setup and install the program on your computer;
  • Launch it and scan your computer for files encrypted by Sfile2 ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Windows Previous Versions feature might work for data recovery.

If the ransomware virus has locked all files on your computer, you might have a chance of reversing them with the help of this tool. However, this software will work only if you have enabled System Restore in the past.

  • Find an encrypted file you need to restore and right-click on it;
  • Select “Properties” and go to “Previous versions” tab;
  • Here, check each of available copies of the file in “Folder versions”. You should select the version you want to recover and click “Restore”.

Shadow Explorer might be successful software for file restore.

If you are looking for a tool that might help you with locked files, you can try this piece of software. Note that this method operates at a good level only if the ransomware virus did not permanently damage or delete the Shadow Volume Copies of the encrypted components.

  • Download Shadow Explorer (http://shadowexplorer.com/);
  • Follow a Shadow Explorer Setup Wizard and install this application on your computer;
  • Launch the program and go through the drop down menu on the top left corner to select the disk of your encrypted data. Check what folders are there;
  • Right-click on the folder you want to restore and select “Export”. You can also select where you want it to be stored.

The official .sfile2 files decrypter is not available at the moment. Cybersecurity specialists are still working on it.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from Sfile2 and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes

Access your website securely from any location

When you work on the domain, site, blog, or different project that requires constant management, content creation, or coding, you may need to connect to the server and content management service more often. It is a hassle when your website is protected from suspicious connections and unauthorized IP addresses.

The best solution for creating a tighter network could be a dedicated/fixed IP address. If you make your IP address static and set to your device, you can connect to the CMS from any location and do not create any additional issues for server or network manager that need to monitor connections and activities. This is how you bypass some of the authentications factors and can remotely use your banking accounts without triggering suspicious with each login. 

VPN software providers like Private Internet Access can help you with such settings and offer the option to control the online reputation and manage projects easily from any part of the world. It is better to clock the access to your website from different IP addresses. So you can keep the project safe and secure when you have the dedicated IP address VPN and protected access to the content management system.

Backup files for the later use, in case of the malware attack

Computer users can suffer from data losses due to cyber infections or their own faulty doings. Ransomware can encrypt and hold files hostage, while unforeseen power cuts might cause a loss of important documents. If you have proper up-to-date backups, you can easily recover after such an incident and get back to work. It is also equally important to update backups on a regular basis so that the newest information remains intact – you can set this process to be performed automatically.

When you have the previous version of every important document or project you can avoid frustration and breakdowns. It comes in handy when malware strikes out of nowhere. Use Data Recovery Pro for the data restoration process.

About the author
Linas Kiguolis
Linas Kiguolis - Expert in social media

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