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Snatch ransomware. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Olivia Morelli - - | Type: Ransomware

Snatch ransomware is a crypto virus that prevents users from opening personal files

Snatch ransomware
Snatch ransomware is a file locker that provides a short ransom note, urging users to contact hackers to retrieve access to the locked data

Snatch ransomware is a data locker that was first spotted in December 2018. The malware uses the AES encryption algorithm to lock up files and appends .snatch extension, preventing users from accessing photos, videos, databases, images, documents, etc. Unfortunately, but the only way to unlock files is to acquire the decryption key that is stored on a remote C&C[1] server that is controlled by hackers. Snatch virus authors make sure that victims are aware of the situation by uploading a ransom note Readme_Restore_Files.txt. It explains that, in order to retrieve the access to the data, they need to email crooks via the imBoristheBlade@protonmail.com address to retrieve further instructions. Typically, cybercriminals ask for ransom to be paid in Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency. However, users should not contact hackers and take care of Snatch ransomware removal as soon as possible.

Name Snatch
Type Ransomware
Discovered December 2018
Encryption AES
File extension .snatch
Ransom note Readme_Restore_Files.txt
Contact imBoristheBlade@protonmail.com
Decryptable? No
Removal Use reputable anti-malware software
Optimization To fix virus damage, use Reimage

Snatch ransomware is distributed with the help of various tricks used by cybercriminals. However, user interaction is typically essential in order to finalize the malicious code execution on the computer. For example, hackers send out thousands of spoofing emails to random users with attachments that, once executed, infect the machine. Additionally, .snatch file virus might be delivered with the help of exploit kits,[2] weak login credentials, fake updates, hacked or cracked installers, etc.

Once executed, the Snatch ransomware payload shuts down several Windows processes and spawns new elements which assist malware with file encryption and the full infection of the PC. For example, modified Windows registry keys ensure that .snatch ransomware is booted with every system start.

The ransom note states the following:

All your files are encrypted
Do not try modify files
My email imBoristheBlade@protonmail.com

As evident, Snatch ransomware developers do not provide much detail about the attack, apart from the contact address and a warning about file modification. In most cases, crooks ask for payment in Bitcoin, and the price may be anything up to $2,000 – $3,000. However, some hackers are willing to settle for as little as $20.

Regardless of the price, bad actors should never be contacted, as the loss of money is plausible. Additionally, it will prove that the business model they operate is working and continue to try blackmailing other people. Therefore, rather remove Snatch ransomware from your machine and then proceed with file recovery procedure.

Unfortunately, the only safe method of restoring files is by using backups. If you do not have any prepared, you can try alternative solutions – we provide instructions below. Also, you could keep a copy of data and wait until security experts create an official .snatch file virus decryptor.

Finally, experts[3] recommend scanning the machine with Reimage or similar software, and it will reverse the damage done by Snatch virus.

Ransomware is distributed with the help of spam emails, as well as other methods

As we already mentioned above, ransomware authors rely on users to make a mistake while browsing the internet and simply get tricked to install malware. Therefore, we advise to take the following actions which could prevent you from unconsciously installing malware:

  • Employ reputable anti-virus software with real-time protection function;
  • Patch your software and the operating system as soon as updates are available. This will help you not only keep your apps fresh but will also prevent hackers from using software vulnerabilities;
  • Do not treat every email you receive casually. Be aware that those with attachments (.doc, .pdf, .html, .txt, etc.) are the most dangerous. Scan the attachment with anti-malware software before opening. Additionally, deceptive hyperlinks can lead to malware-laden sites;
  • Use strong passwords and VPN when using Remote Desktop Protocol;
  • Avoid high-risk websites, such as porn, gambling, torrent, file-sharing, and similar.

Eliminate Snatch ransomware virus from your PC as soon as possible

If you noticed that your files are encrypted with .snatch extension, you should be aware that ransomware might be not the only threat that is established on your PC. Quite often, malware is set to download more malicious applications (backdoor), so victims end up with such infections like data-stealers, crypto-miners, spyware, and other malicious applications.

For that reason, Snatch ransomware removal is essential for computer security and virtual safety. Because malware is a complicated piece of software that affects multiple areas of the system, we highly recommend not to try to remove Snatch ransomware manually. Instead, rely on security software that can detect and eliminate the threat. Be aware that, because the malware is entirely new, not all AV engines might catch it, so scanning the computer with several programs might be a good idea.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to remove virus damage. Free scanner allows you to check whether your PC is infected or not. If you need to remove malware, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage malware removal tool.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Malwarebytes.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Combo Cleaner.

To remove Snatch virus, follow these steps:

Remove Snatch using Safe Mode with Networking

To complete safe Snatch ransomware removal, enter Safe Mode with Networking as explained below:

  • 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 Snatch

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

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

Remove Snatch using System Restore

System restore can also help you to remove .snatch file virus:

  • 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 Snatch. 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 and make sure that Snatch removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

Guide which is presented above is supposed to help you remove Snatch 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 Snatch, you can use several methods to restore them:

Data Recovery Pro is a professional tool that might be able to help

This application is designed to return corrupt, damaged or accidentally deleted files. Nevertheless, it proved to be an excellent help for ransomware victims in some cases.

  • 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 Snatch ransomware;
  • Restore them.

You may use Windows Previous Version feature to recover individual files

If you had System Restore set up prior to the malware attack, you can use Windows Previous Version feature to get some of your files back.

  • 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”.

Make use of ShadowExplorer

If you are lucky, ransomware might have failed to delete Shadow Volume Copies on your PC. In such a case, you will be able to return all your files with the help of ShadowExplorer.

  • 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.

No decryption tool is available yet

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from Snatch and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as Reimage, Malwarebytes MalwarebytesCombo Cleaner or Plumbytes Anti-MalwareMalwarebytes Malwarebytes

About the author

Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli - Ransomware analyst

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