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Unikey ransomware virus. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Olivia Morelli - - | Type: Ransomware
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Unikey ransomware is currently in development – doesn't even ask to pay a ransom

Ransom note left by Unikey virus

Unikey ransomware is a version of the HiddenTear virus[1]. The malicious program is currently in a development process, which means that criminals haven’t started to distribute it on a global scale. After infecting the target system, the virus encrypts files with AES cryptographic algorithm[2] and adds a .locked extension to encrypted files.

Traditionally, the ransomware virus created a ransom note which in this case is called READ_IT.txt. The ransomware says that files have been encrypted with hidden tear and asks to send the scammer “some bitcoins or kebab.” For some reason, the developer points out that he hates nightclubs, desserts and being drunk.

The ransomware clearly says that it is a joke developed by an entirely inexperienced programmer. There is no surprise, considering the fact that the virus is based on HiddenTear open-source ransomware. To put it simply, the script kiddie simply took the Hidden Tear’s code, modified it slightly, renamed the program and this way created a customized version of it.

If Unikey compromised your computer and encrypted your files, you should immediately uninstall the ransomware from the system. We suggest using Reimage or similar programs for that. However, if you want to remove UniKey without facing any interruptions, we suggest rebooting the system into the Safe Mode with Networking.

If you have never done this before, you should follow instructions provided below this article. In case you are looking for a tutorial in a different language, you can visit UsunWirusa.pl or UdenVirus.dk site[3].

After Unikey removal, you have to decide how do you want to recover your files. Ideally, you should use the data backup, however, if you haven’t created this data copy earlier, you will need to rely on third-party tools recommended by us. We have added a list of possible data restoration techniques below this article.

Distribution of malicious ransom-demanding viruses

Viruses that demand ransoms are typically distributed via email spam. It means that you can infect your computer by launching a compromised email attachment or by clicking on a link included in the email message.

More sophisticated ransomware variants can infect your system by exploiting vulnerabilities in software that you already have. For this reason, you should enable automatic software updates to keep all of your programs up-to-date. It is also strongly advisable to use anti-malware software to add that extra layer of protection.

Finally, we do not recommend installing software updates from untrustworthy sites. If you were unexpectedly redirected to a website that suggests installing an update to your media player or Java/Flash player, quit that site immediately. Do not click on everything the Internet presents to you.

Remove UniKey ransomware easily

You can remove Unikey ransomware virus in less than one hour if you follow our instructions carefully. We strongly suggest that you carry out the instructions on how to restart your PC into Safe Mode with Networking – this will help you to disable the ransomware, at least for a while.

After rebooting the system into the described mode, complete Unikey removal by running a system scan with a preferred anti-malware software. We suggest using one of the security programs listed below the article. If you want to know more about each of them, you should head to the “Software” section on our site.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove infection using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to uninstall Unikey ransomware virus. 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.

More information about this program can be found in Reimage review.

More information about this program can be found in Reimage review.

Manual Unikey virus Removal Guide:

Remove Unikey using Safe Mode with Networking

Reimage is a tool to detect malware.
You need to purchase Full version to remove infections.
More information about Reimage.

This virus can be easily removed, but you will need to restart your PC into Safe Mode with Networking first. We strongly recommend that you follow instructions provided below to complete this task properly.

  • 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 Unikey

    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 Unikey removal.

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

Remove Unikey using System Restore

Reimage is a tool to detect malware.
You need to purchase Full version to remove infections.
More information about Reimage.

  • 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 Unikey. 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 Unikey removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

Restore your files using copies of your files (a data backup) or try one of the methods suggested below.

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

Find out if Windows Previous Versions feature can help you

If you created a System Restore Point at some point in the past, you should try this method. It is extremely useful when you only need to restore some individual files.

  • 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”.

Visit the official website of the NoMoreRansom project

Check out decryption tools on NoMoreRansom website – some of them might help you to restore your files.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from Unikey and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware

About the author

Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli - Ransomware analyst

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