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

removal by Alice Woods - - | Type: Ransomware
12

The main features of VHDLocker ransomware virus

VHDLocker ransomware is quite a strange example of a file-encrypting virus. One the affected computer it locks targeted files and stores them in a Virtual Hard Disk (VHD)[1]. The virus does not target the wide range of files; however, it makes sure that all popular file types won’t survive the attack. After infiltration, it scans the system and looks for various audio, video, music, image files, MS Word documents, PDFs, ZIP archives, databases, etc. Following data encryption, VHDLocker virus (also known as PleaseRead Ransomware) leaves a ransom note called PLEASE READ.txt where informs victims about the attack and gives instructions for data recovery. The developer of the ransomware starts with an apology for causing problems for the victim and informs that it’s just a business. If a victim wants to get back access to the files, he or she has to transfer 0,5 Bitcoins to the provided Bitcoin wallet address[2]. Once the transaction is made, a victim should contact the cyber criminal via one of these email addresses davidblainemagique@gmail.com or davidblaine@mail2world.com to get a necessary password to unlock the files. Though, if you got infected with ransomware, we want to discourage you from following hacker’s orders[3]. It’s better to remove VHDLocker than risk losing your money. No one can guarantee you that the hacker provides you a password after you pay the money, or the password will actually work. What is more, you may get infected with another money and asked to transfer more money.

After infiltration VHDLocker virus might make entries in the Windows Registry in order to launch itself every time victims turns on the computer and starts Windows. What is more, the virus might be capable of deleting Shadow Volume Copies[4] of the targeted files by using vssadmin.exe Delete Shadows /All /Quiet command. If it succeeds, data recovery might be a complicated task for those who do not have data backups. However, the fear of losing your personal files should not encourage you to pay the ransom. As we already mentioned, it’s a risky business, and we believe that you do not want to be a sponsor for further cyber crimes. Therefore, after the attack, start VHDLocker removal immediately. To complete this task successfully, you will need to employ professional malware removal program such as Reimage or Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus.

Distribution techniques and methods

VHDLocker malware hasn’t started spreading widely yet. However, it seems that the most common way to distribute the virus is spam emails campaigns. The developers of the virus attach obfuscated ransomware executable in a misleading email and express the urge to open it. The dangerous email might pretend to be a notification from PayPal, Facebook, Instagram or other well-known organization, shop or business enterprise. Therefore, the attached document might look like ordinary PDF, DOCX or XLSX file; however, it might include a Trojan. Hence, if you want to protect your data from the ransomware, you should be careful with emails. Open attached documents or click on provided links only if you are 100% sure that you can trust the sender[5]. What is more, you should also strengthen your computer’s security by installing an antivirus program and keeping all your software updated. Staying away from high-risk websites and avoid clicking on online ads reduce the risk of malware attack as well.

Guidelines for VHDLocker removal

Ransomware removal should be taken seriously; hence, you should not try to do it manually. To remove VHDLocker manually might end up with causing even bigger damage to your computer. File-encrypting viruses are capable of hiding under safe-looking filenames, and you may accidentally delete crucial system file. We highly recommend to employ a reputable malware removal tool such as Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware and initiate automatic VHDLocker removal. However, we want to point out athat you may need to reboot your computer to the Safe Mode in order to install, update or launch malware removal program. Below you will instructions how to do it.

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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 VHDLocker 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 VHDLocker virus Removal Guide:

Remove VHDLocker 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.

Before installing malware removal program, reboot your computer to the Safe Mode as shown 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 VHDLocker

    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 VHDLocker removal.

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

Remove VHDLocker using System Restore

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

If you still cannot install or run malware removal software, please follow the instructions:

  • 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 VHDLocker. 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 VHDLocker removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

If you have data backups, after VHDLocker removal, plugin external device and copy necessary files. Otherwise, try additional data recovery methods presented below. We cannot assure that you will succeed to recover all encrypted files; though, the at least some of them should be rescued.

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

Restore files encrypted by VHDLocker ransomware virus using Data Recovery Pro

Data Recover Pro is not an actual decrypter for VHDLocker; however, this tool is capable of restoring deleted, corrupted and some of the encrypted files. Hence, we highly recommend giving it a try.

Restore files encrypted byVHDLocker virus using Windows Previous Versions feature

Windows Previous Versions feature allows traveling back in time and access previously saved versions of the encrypted documents. However, this data recovery method is only available if System Restore function was enabled before ransomware attack.

  • 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”.

VHDLocker Decryptor is not available yet

As soon as decryption software for VHDLocker decryption is released, we update the information.

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

About the author

Alice Woods
Alice Woods - Likes to teach users about virus prevention

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References


  • Ethan

    need decrypter so much!!

  • Nathan

    virus deleted shadow volume copies.. dont know how to recover my files..

  • Jack

    Ive got infected after opening fake invoice :/