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Zenis ransomware. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Ugnius Kiguolis - - | Type: Ransomware

Zenis ransomware – crypto-virus which asks its victims to play the game

Zenis ransomware virus printscreen

Zenis ransomware analysis has already revealed that it is a dangerous crypto-virus[1] which relies on an advanced AES encryption algorithm used to corrupt MS Office documents, PDF files, text files, photos, videos, image files, archives, and other personal victim's files. Each file encrypted by this ransomware virus receives “Zenis-[2 random characters].[12 random characters]” file extension. Following data encryption, it generates a ransom note called Zenis-Instructions.html and drops Zenis Decryptor.exe file on the desktop.

Name Zenis
Type Ransomware
Sub-type Crypto-malware
Detection date March 2018
Danger level High. Can cause permanent loss of personal files
Symptoms All data encrypted with Zenis- <2_chars> template. file extension, ransom note on the desktop
Associated files Zenis Decryptor.exe,  Zenis.exe, Zenis-Instructions.html
Related email address TheZenis@Tutanota.com, TheZenis@MailFence.com,  TheZenis@Protonmail.com and TheZenis@Mail2Tor.com

According to ransomware researchers, virus exhibits low degree of prevalence. However, it has already been found to remove backup files, even if the victim is convinced to make a payment.[2]

Observing the symptoms triggered by Zenis ransomware, it looks like that virus gets into target computers via unprotected RDP configuration and spam. Once the ransomware payload is being executed, the virus runs multiple scripts via Command Prompt Admin environment to block anti-virus programs and hack legitimate system’s processes to evade detection and removal.

However, the main task of this crypt-ransomware is to render personal files on the hijacked computer useless. The file extension unprecedented and seems to be a tough nut to crack. Each file gets the Zenis file extension and becomes useless. Upon successful file encryption, the ransomware creates a ransom note in the form of a .txt file. It informs the victim about the type of the virus and provides detailed instructions on how to use Zenis ransomware decryptor.

The user of the affected PC is asked to contact the ransomware developers via a given email address and send them an encrypted file which does not exceed 2 MB. They promise to unlock the file for free to prove that they store a private decryption key. Additionally, crooks inform their victim that the ransom should be paid in Bitcoins via the Bitcoin wallet via anonymous TOR web browser.[3] 

*** All your files has been encrypted ***
I am ZENIS. A mischievous boy who loves cryptography, hardware and programming. My world is full of unanswered questions and puzzles half and half, and I'm coming to discover a new world.
A world in digital space that you are supposed to play the role of my toys.
If you want to win in this game, you have to listen carefully to my instructions, otherwise you will be caught up in a one-step game and you will become the mam loser of the story.
My instructions are simple and clear. Then follow these steps:
1. Send this file (Zenis-Instructions.html) to my email with one your encrypted file less than 2 MB to trust to the game.
2. I decrypt your file for free and send for you.
3. If you confirm the correctness of the files, verify that the files are correct via email
4. Then receive the price of decrypting files
5. After you have deposited, please send me the payment details
6. After i confirm deposit, i send you the “Zenis Decryptor” along with “Private Key” to recovery all your files.
Now you can finish the game. You won the game, congratulations.
Please submit your request to both emails:
{..}

A free decryptor is not available. Cybercrooks warn the victim that the usage of third-party decryptors may lead to permanent data loss. It’s not clear whether such menaces are true or not. However, it’s not clear if the decryptor purchased from crooks will unlock your files as well.

To protect your PC from further damage and get the chance unlock files using backups, you have to remove Zenis ransomware from the system. For this purpose, you should run a scan with a reputable security tool with updated virus definitions. Our top pick for Zenis ransomware removal is Reimage. Please, update the software before a scan.

If the ransomware is blocking your attempt to run anti-virus, try rebooting the system to Safe Mode with networking or try System Restore function. The instructions on how to use any of these options are provided in the end of this article. 

 

Crypto-malware payloads can be disguised under malicious spam email attachments

The behavior, design, payment site, and accessibility of digital currency are not distinctive from other crypto-malware. Distribution technique as well. Cybersecurity researchers from Virukset.no[4] claim that to protect the system from this ransomware attack is to bypass suspicious emails.

Email messages from pretend-to-be legitimate authorities or trusted companies like Amazon, Windows, IRS, etc. that contains attachments in formats, like .docx, .doc, .pdf, .jpg, etc.) might be infected. A serious warning sign of ransomware attack when opening email attachments are the requirement to enable Macros.

Apart from spam emails, users can download malware via JavaScript infected websites, fake software updates or malicious apps distributed on illegal websites.

A guide on how to remove Zenis ransomware

Zenis ransomware removal is the only option that you have to clean up the system from malicious files and processes. However, virus removal will not help to recover your files. Nevertheless, you will be able to encrypt files using third-party software, backups or other methods listed below.

Before initiating data recovery, make sure you remove Zenis ransomware with each of its files. Otherwise, personal data will soon be locked again. There’s no way to remove this crypto-malware manually, so don’t waste your time. Launch your anti-virus and try to restore files using the following instructions.

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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 Zenis ransomware. 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 Zenis virus Removal Guide:

Remove Zenis using Safe Mode with Networking

In case ransomware virus render your anti-virus useless, you should boot the system into Safe Mode with Networking to launch the security tool:

  • 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 Zenis

    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 Zenis removal.

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

Remove Zenis 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 Zenis. 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 Zenis removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

Give Data Recovery Tool a try

Data Recovery Pro is not initially inclined to cracking ransomware encryption algorithms. It aims at recovering accidentally deleted files or data wiped out due to system's crash. However, it appears to be a powerful tool in decrypting files locked by many ransomware. 

Separate files can be encrypted using Previous Windows Version

Those PC users who regularly create System Restore Points can turn the Previous Windows Version into account. Although this option will not help to restore file packages and folders, you will be able to recover the most important files separately.

  • 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”.

Decrypt files encrypted by Zenis ransomware with ShadowExplorer

If Zenis virus failed to eliminate Volume Shadow Copies, you may be able to recover data by following 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.

A legitimate Zenis ransomware decryptor is not yet available

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

About the author

Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The mastermind

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References

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