Complete .2018 Virus Removal Guide (Full Instructions)

An infection with the dangerous .2018 Virus leads to serious security issues. Victims can restore and protect their computers by following our complete removal guide.

Remove .2018 Virus and Restore PC
Manual Removal Guide
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Distribution of .2018 Virus

The .2018 Virus is a new virus which has been sighted in attack campaign. At the moment the security researchers cannot determine the primary infection strategy. We presume that the most widely used tactics are going to be employed.

Among them are the email messages created in an automated way and sent to large lists of potential victims. The .2018 Virus can be directly attached to the messages. This is one of the easiest way for the criminals to attempt the infection. However a lot of email hosting providers usually capture the signatures of the virus and as such discard such messages or label them as dangerous or spam. Other infection methods related to this one is the option of inserting hyperlinks in the body content of the messages. The links are usually labeled as leading to a familiar website or a file of user interest. Redirects can redirect to hacker-controlled sites, infected payloads or other instances that can lead to an .2018 Virus infection.

The computer criminals behind the malware can create malicious sites or download portals which distribute malware of different kinds, including the .2018 Virus. A popular option is the use of infected documents which may be of different types ‒ spreadsheets, rich text documents, presentations and databases. They are modified to initiate the virus once the built-in scripts are run. Usually when the files are opened a notification will ask the users to run the macros (scripts). If this is done the infection follows.

The hacker-controlled sites are specialist portals that have been created either manually or automatically by the criminals behind the .2018 Virus. They can either directly distribute the threat by initiating various scripts or automated operations or link to such instances. Redirects are usually caused by email interaction, ad networks or other browsing activity. However one of the main sources is the availability of browser hijackers. They are malicious addons made for the most popular web browsers ‒ Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Opera, Microsoft Edge and Safari. Once installed they not only infect the users with the malware, but also redirect the victims to a hacker-controlled site. Depending on the configuration the browser hijackers can also steal sensitive information such as any stored passwords, account credentials, history, bookmarks, form data and settings.

Impact of .2018 Virus

The .2018 virus is a new malware threat alternative known as the EncryptServer2018 Ransomware. The security analysts that reported its appearance note that it has been made by an unknown hacker or criminal collective. At the moment the complete malware analysis is not yet ready. However at the time of writing this removal article we have received confirmation that the code can be freely modified according to the target users.

One of the worrying aspects that are related to it is that the collective or individual behind it is still unknown. There are several hypotheses as to how the malware has been created:

  • Own Invention — The hacker or group behind the .2018 virus have created it from scratch.
  • Customized Version — It is possible that the acquired samples are merely customized threats of malware distribute in the hacker communities.
  • Underground Release — New and unknown viruses are usually traded on the hacker underground markets and then set loose on the wider Internet.

As usual the virus can use the typical infection pattern where the behavior patterns begin with the information gathering module. It aims to retrive as much personal information as possible. This includes the installed hardware components, software and user configuration. As a result the .2018 virus has the capability to extract information from different places, including the web browsers. Thereby personal information can be retrieved such as any stored bookmarks, history, cookies, account credentials and passwords.

The hacker can then continue the infections by instituting a Trojan component. It allows the hacker controllers to setup a connection between the host and a command and control server. As such the hackers can constantly monitor the users behavior in real time and take over control of the machines as they see fit. In complex infection scenarios this feature is used to deliver malware through the existing .2018 virus infections.

The security analysts also note that if the hackers envision a more complex behavior pattern they can also include a stealth protection feature. It woud use the information gathered by the information retrieval component and use it to locate any existing security software. This list includes all anti-virus products, firewalls, sandboxes, virtual machines and etc. The virus can then attempt to bypass the software or even delete them. If the engine finds that it is unable to do so it can remove itself from the system in order to avoid detection.

Once all stages have complete the ransomware process is started. Like other similar threats it aims to process the most widely used data. Examples include: archives, backups, documents, images, music, videos, databases and etc. Not only is the .2018 extension added to the compromised files but also the file names are obfuscated using a built-in algorithm. This is made in order to further confuse the users and pressure them into paying the hackers.

The ransomware note itself is created in a file that reads the following:

Attention !!!
All your files on this server have been encrypted.
Write this ID in the title of your message
To restore the files need to write to us on e-mail: tornado_777@aol.com or BM-2cXXgKAo8HzUmijt8KMywZYHm8xDHhxwZg@bitmessage.ch
The price for restoration depends on how quickly you write tous.
After payment we will send you a decryption tool that willdecrypt all your files.
GUARANTEES!!!
You can send us up to 3 files for free decryption.
-files should not contain important information
-and their total size should be less than 1 MB
HOW TO OBTAIN BITCOINS!!!
The easiest way to buy bitcoins is the LocalBitcoins website.
You need to register, click “Buy bitcoyne” and select theseller by method of payment and price
https://localbitcoins.com/buy_bitcoins
IMPORTANT !!!
Do not rename encrypted files
Do not try to decrypt your data with third-party software,this can lead to permanent data loss!
Your ID ***

Remove .2018 Virus and Restore PC

WARNING! Manual removal of the .2018 Virus requires being familiar with system files and registries. Removing important data accidentally can lead to permanent system damage. If you don’t feel comfortable with manual instructions, download a powerful anti-malware tool that will scan your system for malware and clean it safely for you.

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SpyHunter anti-malware tool will diagnose all current threats on the computer. By purchasing the full version, you will be able to remove all malware threats instantly. Additional information about SpyHunter / Help to uninstall SpyHunter

.2018 Virus – Manual Removal Steps

Start the PC in Safe Mode with Network

This will isolate all files and objects created by the ransomware so they will be removed efficiently. The steps bellow are applicable to all Windows versions.

1. Hit the WIN Key + R

2. A Run window will appear. In it, write msconfig and then press Enter

3. A Configuration box shall appear. In it Choose the tab named Boot

4. Mark Safe Boot option and then go to Network under it to tick it too

5. Apply -> OK

Remove .2018 from Windows

Here’s a way to remove the program. This method will work regardless if you’re on Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP. Simply selecting the program and pressing delete won’t work, as it’ll leave a lot of small files. That’s bad because these leftovers can linger on and cause all sorts of problems. The best way to delete a program is to uninstall it. Here’s how you can do that:

1. Hold the “Windows” button (It’s between CTRL and Alt on most keyboards) and press “R”. You’ll see a pop-up window.

2. In the textbox, type “appwiz.cpl”, then press“ Enter ”.

3. The “Programs and features” menu should now appear. It’s a list of all the programs installed on the PC. Here you can find the program, select it, and press “Uninstall“.

Remove .2018 Virus From Your Browser

Before resetting your browser’s settings, you should know that this action will wipe out all your recorded usernames, passwords, and other types of data. Make sure to save them in some way.

Removal guide for Mozilla Firefox Removal guide for Google Chrome Removal guide for Internet Explorer

    1. Start Mozilla Firefox. In the upper right corner, click on the Open menu icon and select “Add-ons“.

    2. Inside the Add-ons Manager select “Extensions“. Search the list of extensions for suspicious entries. If you find any, select them and click “Remove“.

    3. Click again on the Open menu icon, then click “Options“.

    4. In the Options window, under “General” tab, click “Restore to Default“.

    5. Select “Search” in the left menu, mark the unknown search engine and press “Remove”.

    1. Start Google Chrome. On the upper-right corner, there a “Customize and Control” menu icon. Click on it, then click on “Settings“.

    2. Click “Extensions” in the left menu. Then click on the trash bin icon to remove the suspicious extension.

    3. Again in the left menu, under Chrome, Click on “Settings“. Go under “On Startup” and set a new page.

    4. Afterward, scroll down to “Search“, click on “Manage search engines“.

    5. In the default search settings list, find the unknown search engine and click on “X“. Then select your search engine of choice and click “Make default“. When you are ready click “Done” button in the right bottom corner.

1. Start Internet Explorer. Go to the “Tools” menu and click on “Manage add-ons“.

2. In the “Manage add-ons” window, bellow “Add-on Types“, select “Toolbars and Extensions“. If you see a suspicious toolbar, select it and click “Remove“.

3. Then again in the “Manage Add-ons” window, in “Add-on Types“, Select “Search Providers“. Chose a search engine and click “Set as default“. Select the unknown search engine and click “Remove and Close”.

4. Open the Tools menu, select “Internet Options”.

5. In the “General” tab, in “Home page”, enter your preferred page. Click “Apply” and “OK”.

Repair Windows Registry

1. Again type simultaneously the WIN Key + R key combination

2. In the box, write regedit and hit Enter

3. Type the CTRL+ F and then write the malicious name in the search type field to locate the malicious executable

4. In case you have discovered registry keys and values related to the name, you should delete them, but be careful not to delete legitimate keys

Click for more information about Windows Registry and further repair help

Preventive Security Measures

  • Enable and properly configure your Firewall.
  • Install and maintain reliable anti-malware software.
  • Secure your web browser.
  • Check regularly for available software updates and apply them.
  • Disable macros in Office documents.
  • Use strong passwords.
  • Don’t open attachments or click on links unless you’re certain they’re safe.
  • Backup regularly your data.
  • Author : Martin Beltov

    Martin graduated with a degree in Publishing from Sofia University. As a cyber security enthusiast he enjoys writing about the latest threats and mechanisms of intrusion.


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