.zzz File Extension virus (Removal Instructions) - Recovery Instructions Included

.zzz File Extension virus Removal Guide

What is .zzz File Extension virus?

What is the purpose of .zzz File Extension virus?

.zzz File Extension virus is a malicious program which seeks to block users’ files by adding a .zzz file extension [1] to each of the infected items. This malware is attributed to the ransomware category [2] because the main thing that it seeks, is to make its victims pay the ransom in exchange for a special key needed for decrypting encrypted files. Please, do NOT support hackers by paying the ransom because there is no guarantee that you will get your files back! If your files have already been appended with a .zzz extensions, you should scan your computer with a reputable antivirus software and we are almost certain that you will find Teslacrypt or its latest versions occupying your computer.

Example of .zzz file extension ransomware.zzz file extension ransomware locks computer files with specific extensions.

As soon as .zzz File Extension virus malware enters the system, it runs a scan and tries to find needed files. Typically, it searches for the following extensions: .docx, .docm, .xls, .xlsx, .ppt, .pptx, .pptm, .pdf, .eps, .ai, .indd, .cdr, .dng, .lnk, .jpg, .png, .pdd, .doc, .jfif, .jpeg, .gif, .bmp, .exif, .txt, .wps, .mp3. Once it finds needed files, it encrypts them using RSA-2048 encryption algorithm [3]. Also, it starts showing a huge warning message that informs the victims that hey have to pay a ransom in exchange for the ability to use their files again. Having in mind the fact that this ransomware is capable of affecting photos, music files, videos, business documents and even art, we assume that there are hundreds of PC users who have already paid the ransom for the developers of .zzz File Extension ransomware. Nevertheless, we highly recommend not to collaborate with the extortionists and refuse to do what they ask you to. As soon as you discovering that you are affected by this ransomware, disconnect your computer from the Internet immediately. Then, make sure that you scan your machine with the reliable anti-spyware to remove .zzz File Extension virus from the system. For that, you can use FortectIntego anti-malware. Finally, when the .zzz File Extension removal is done, you should try decrypting your files. If you haven’t got any extra copies of your files, you can try these tools: R-Studio, Photorec or Kaspersky virus-fighting utilities. However, we should warn you not to expect these utilities to roll back your system to its initial. Do not forget you are dealing with an advanced malware, after all.

If we were to summarize the main zzz File Extension features, we would come up with such a list:

  • This virus belongs to the ransomware category;
  • It infiltrates computers with the help of infected email attachments [4];
  • .zzz File Extension encrypts files using RSA-2048 algorithm;
  • It adds .zzz extension to each of affected files;
  • .zzz File Extension virus removal does not help to recover affected files.

How can I get infected with this threat?

Typically, .zzz File Extension ransomware and other viruses of this type spread around as “important” email messages. A trojan horse, which is supposed to infect the system with this cyber threat, is mostly hidden inside the attachment. To trick users into downloading it, the email message presents itself as a warning from some governmental authority, etc. To protect yourself from infected email attachments, you should double check each message before opening it. Firstly, you should check the sender, then read the entire body of the message [5]. If it looks too good to be true or if it filled with a typo or grammar mistakes, you should delete it. Of course, we highly recommend installing a reliable anti-spyware for preventing unwanted programs and dangerous viruses.

When infected with .zzz File Extension, it could seem that paying a ransom is the only way to recover your files. As a rule, such threats usually require a ransom of $300 – $500. However, you should always take into account the fact that there is no guarantee that this payment will help you to get a special key needed for the decryption of your files. To prevent the loss of your files AND your money, you should follow a guide given in the next page of this post.

How to remove .zzz File Extension ransomware from my computer?

If your computer is infected with .zzz File Extension virus and you cannot open any of your files, you should first disconnect your machine from the Internet. Please, do that as soon as possible to prevent the further loss of your files. Now, you can proceed with the .zzz File Extension removal. To clean up the computer, you must exterminate all the malicious files the virus has deployed on your computer. It is a painstakingly long and risky procedure if you decide to do it manually. Thus, we recommend our users to employ specialized software and remove .zzz File Extension virus automatically. The elimination guide below should help you do that. Besides, just below the removal instructions you will also find alternative suggestions for the data recovery.

do it now!
Fortect Happiness
Intego Happiness
Compatible with Microsoft Windows Compatible with macOS
What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix virus damage using Fortect Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Fortect Intego has a free limited scanner. Fortect Intego offers more through scan when you purchase its full version. When free scanner detects issues, you can fix them using free manual repairs or you can decide to purchase the full version in order to fix them automatically.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Fortect, try running SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

Getting rid of .zzz File Extension virus. Follow these steps

Manual removal using Safe Mode

.zzz File Extension ransomware may try blocking your antivirus and preventing it from running a systems scan. If you are even in such a situation, do not panic — the instructions below will explain how to bypass this antivirus blocking feature.

Important! →
Manual removal guide might be too complicated for regular computer users. It requires advanced IT knowledge to be performed correctly (if vital system files are removed or damaged, it might result in full Windows compromise), and it also might take hours to complete. Therefore, we highly advise using the automatic method provided above instead.

Step 1. Access Safe Mode with Networking

Manual malware removal should be best performed in the Safe Mode environment. 

Windows 7 / Vista / XP
  1. Click Start > Shutdown > Restart > OK.
  2. When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 button (if that does not work, try F2, F12, Del, etc. – it all depends on your motherboard model) multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
  3. Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list. Windows 7/XP
Windows 10 / Windows 8
  1. Right-click on Start button and select Settings.
  2. Scroll down to pick Update & Security.
    Update and security
  3. On the left side of the window, pick Recovery.
  4. Now scroll down to find Advanced Startup section.
  5. Click Restart now.
  6. Select Troubleshoot. Choose an option
  7. Go to Advanced options. Advanced options
  8. Select Startup Settings. Startup settings
  9. Press Restart.
  10. Now press 5 or click 5) Enable Safe Mode with Networking. Enable safe mode

Step 2. Shut down suspicious processes

Windows Task Manager is a useful tool that shows all the processes running in the background. If malware is running a process, you need to shut it down:

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
  2. Click on More details.
    Open task manager
  3. Scroll down to Background processes section, and look for anything suspicious.
  4. Right-click and select Open file location.
    Open file location
  5. Go back to the process, right-click and pick End Task.
    End task
  6. Delete the contents of the malicious folder.

Step 3. Check program Startup

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
  2. Go to Startup tab.
  3. Right-click on the suspicious program and pick Disable.

Step 4. Delete virus files

Malware-related files can be found in various places within your computer. Here are instructions that could help you find them:

  1. Type in Disk Cleanup in Windows search and press Enter.
    Disk cleanup
  2. Select the drive you want to clean (C: is your main drive by default and is likely to be the one that has malicious files in).
  3. Scroll through the Files to delete list and select the following:

    Temporary Internet Files
    Recycle Bin
    Temporary files

  4. Pick Clean up system files.
    Delete temp files
  5. You can also look for other malicious files hidden in the following folders (type these entries in Windows Search and press Enter):


After you are finished, reboot the PC in normal mode.

Remove .zzz File Extension using System Restore

There are many ways in which .zzz File Extension ransomware may to prevent its removal from the computer. One of these techniques is security software blocking. The step-by-step guide below explains how to decontaminate the antivirus blocking capacities easily and without risking to damage your system.

  • 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 .zzz File Extension. 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 FortectIntego and make sure that .zzz File Extension removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

Guide which is presented above is supposed to help you remove .zzz File Extension 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 .zzz File Extension, you can use several methods to restore them:

What are the benefits of using Data Recovery Pro?

Data Recovery Pro is a software that is acknowledged as a tool which helps to recover deleted or corrupted files. It can also be used for data recovery after the files have been encrypted by some malicious ransomware. You should give this tool a try. Instructions how to use it are given here:

  • 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 .zzz File Extension ransomware;
  • Restore them.

How can Windows Previous Versions feature serve in data recovery after ransomware attack?

Windows Previous Versions feature allows recovering file versions from a specific time in the past. Nevertheless, there are some flaws to this method. First, it can not be applied for the entire system recovery and second, it only works if the System restore function was enabled on the computer before virus attack. Given the right conditions, you may try recovering your files following these steps:

  • 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”.

Putting ShadowExplorer in use for the data recovery:

To recover your data with ShadowExplorer, you have to make sure the virus has not deleted the Volume Shadow Copies of encrypted files. If the files have been deleted, this recovery method will not work. Here, we provide a short guide to help you operate ShadowExplorer more easily.

  • 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 .zzz File Extension and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as FortectIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes

How to prevent from getting ransomware

Choose a proper web browser and improve your safety with a VPN tool

Online spying has got momentum in recent years and people are getting more and more interested in how to protect their privacy online. One of the basic means to add a layer of security – choose the most private and secure web browser. Although web browsers can't grant full privacy protection and security, some of them are much better at sandboxing, HTTPS upgrading, active content blocking, tracking blocking, phishing protection, and similar privacy-oriented features. However, if you want true anonymity, we suggest you employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN – it can encrypt all the traffic that comes and goes out of your computer, preventing tracking completely.


Lost your files? Use data recovery software

While some files located on any computer are replaceable or useless, others can be extremely valuable. Family photos, work documents, school projects – these are types of files that we don't want to lose. Unfortunately, there are many ways how unexpected data loss can occur: power cuts, Blue Screen of Death errors, hardware failures, crypto-malware attack, or even accidental deletion.

To ensure that all the files remain intact, you should prepare regular data backups. You can choose cloud-based or physical copies you could restore from later in case of a disaster. If your backups were lost as well or you never bothered to prepare any, Data Recovery Pro can be your only hope to retrieve your invaluable files.

About the author
Gabriel E. Hall
Gabriel E. Hall - Passionate web researcher

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