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

removal by Olivia Morelli - - | Type: Ransomware
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New VxLock ransomware spotted: how to identify this malicious virus?

VxLock virus is an example of a typical ransomware[1] virus. If it finds a way to infiltrate victim’s computer, it encrypts all data stored on it, for instance, documents, pictures, videos, music, and other files. Encryption simply changes files on a fundamental level, and then it becomes impossible to open them, edit them, or basically do anything with them. VxLock ransomware was named like this because it adds .VxLock file extension to encrypted files. When the virus encrypts all files, the victim is left with a bunch of useless memory-taking data pieces that cannot be used anymore. They can be restored, but in order to do that, the victim has to obtain a decryption key[2], which, of course, is stored on cyber criminals’ servers. It goes without saying that criminals are not willing to give up this key for free, so they demand a ransom. 

Therefore, VxLock malware creates a ransom note and saves it on computer’s desktop. You might also find copies of the ransom note in different computer folders (most likely those that contain some encrypted files). The ransom note can be created in .txt, .hta or .html file formats. It contains instructions on how to buy Bitcoins[3] and transfer them to a provided Bitcoin wallet that belongs to cyber criminals. Typically criminals demand from 0.5 to 1.5 and more Bitcoins. They promise to reveal the decryption key and provide the decryption software if the victim pays the ransom. We highly recommend you not to do so, because criminals might be lying to you. Nothing can stop them from taking your money and making off, and you have no guarantees[4], so why would you want to pay such a huge ransom? It is better to start from the beginning, take care of the most important thing – computer security, and start creating regular backups. To remove VxLock ransomware, it is highly advisable to rely on tools such as Reimage or Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus. After completing VxLock removal, we suggest you use backups or data recovery steps written below this article.

Dissemination methods

VxLock virus can sneak into your computer with your approval or without it. In the first scenario, you can download it straight to your computer after opening an infectious email attachment. Please remember that nowadays cyber criminals do everything in order to deceive victims and make them believe that the sender is an employee of some big and well-known company. In most cases, frauds pretend to be official representatives of certain Amazon or Paypal services. Be sure that sender’s email is a legitimate one because scammers will design these phishing letters precisely and copy every detail and image to gain your trust. The general advice is to rely on your common sense and never open attachments of an email message that you weren’t expecting to get, that contains an eye-catching title, or that simply urges you to open attached documents. Speaking about different dissemination methods, we must mention that ransomware can be injected to your computer simply by visiting websites that host an exploit kit. Such kit is a tool to scan the system for vulnerable applications that allow executing a code via them. Therefore, to prevent such attacks, you must continuously update the software that you use.

How can I remove VxLock ransomware from the system?

Remove VxLock virus from the system immediately. We do not recommend you to pay a ransom, because that is not the solution to the discussed problem and there are many cases when criminals simply laughed and criminals and never provided the decryption tools[5] or, in other cases, asked to pay more money to them. If you have been attacked, understand that your system is not protected enough and take actions to fix this situation. Before you do that, complete steps explained in this VxLock removal tutorial:

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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 VxLock 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.
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Manual VxLock virus Removal Guide:

Remove VxLock using Safe Mode with Networking

Start the removal procedure by rebooting your device. You will need to enter a certain mode to be able to complete VxLock ransomware virus removal successfully. We suggest you follow these 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 VxLock

    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 VxLock removal.

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

Remove VxLock using System Restore

  • 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 VxLock. 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 VxLock removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

If you do not have a backup, using Data Recovery Pro is great idea

Data Recovery Pro is an advantageous tool that can help you to recover some corrupted files. We definitely recommend using it.

Use ShadowExplorer software

ShadowExplorer is a software that helps to recover encrypted/corrupted data using Volume Shadow Copies. To find out if the virus deleted the copies or not, follow these steps:

  • 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.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from VxLock 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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  • Melania2

    Im afraid of ransomware… Hopefully I wont get infected!

  • Ronny

    More and more examples of ransomware… when is this nightmare going to end?

    • mohawk.zx

      Its hard to predict. Well, I guess all scammers could get busted if somebody from Tor helps.

  • ayla

    I wish I had an antivirus!! now my files are encrypted nd theres no backups…