Complete .saturn Virus Removal Guide (Full Instructions)

.saturn virus image

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

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

The .saturn 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 .saturn 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 .saturn Virus infection.

The computer criminals behind the malware can create malicious sites or download portals which distribute malware of different kinds, including the .saturn 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 .saturn 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 .saturn Virus

The .saturn virus is a new ransomware threat that is being used in a wide variety of attack campaigns against end users. The security analysis performed by the experts that announced its discovery note that this is a highly advanced threat that begins with a stealth protection component. It is able to scan the host system for any running security software or programming environment that can interfere with its execution. This inclueds anti-virus applications, sandbox and debugging programs and virtual machine hosts. The .saturn virus can bypass or remove them from the computer or alternatively the virus can delete itself to avoid detection.

Once this step of the infection process has complete the first stage of the actual virus deployment begins. This is done by dropping the main malware site to a system location. This makes it very hard to detect from where the processes are started. The .saturn virus then starts to modify the target operating system:

  • The malware engine deletes the found shadow volume copies of all found data. This makes recovery very difficult without the use of a professional grade data recovery software.Name
  • The .saturn virus also manipulates the boot options and removes the ability to start the recovery procedure.
  • Other Windows registry changes and configuration files contents can be modified in order to cause different detrimental effects to the computers.

The victims can experience serious performance issues and may find that certain applications or system services may stop working. Using the above mentioned commands the hackers can also institute a dangerous Trojan instance that can spy on the victims in real time. In it can also be used to overtake control of the compromised machines at any given time. The .saturn virus can also delete any backups copies ordered by the users or made automatically by the operating system.

An extensive information gathering module is launched that is able to extract a lot of sensitive information from the victims and the impacted machines. It is usually classified into two main groups:

  • Anonymous Data — These metrics concern the available hardware compoennts and certain operating system values. They are used to guide the hacker attackers about the effectiveness of the hacker campaign.
  • Personally-Identifiable Information — They can directly expose the victim’s identity. The .saturn virus engine is programmed in order to extract strings related to their name, telephone number, address, location, interests, account credentials and passwords.

The .saturn virus also retrieves data about the regional settings set by the users. This is used by the ransomware component that at a later stage in order to display the most appropriate ransom note. Another dangerous method involves the set up of a connection with the command and control servers. This allows the hackers to execute arbitrary commands on the victim computers which can deliver additional threats.

Once all components have completed execution the ransomware engine is started. Some of the harvested .saturn virus samples have been found to target a wide variety of data. The list of target file type extensions includes the following files:

.123, .1cd, .3dm, .3ds, .602, .accdb, .aif, .apk, .asm, .asp, .avi, .backup, .bak, .bat, .bmp,
.cdr, .cfg, .cgm, .class, .com, .config, .cpp, .crt, .csr, .csv, .dat, .dbf, .dif, .doc, .docm,
.docp, .docx, .dwg, .gadget, .gif, .h, .ico, .iff, .jar, .java, .jpeg, .jpg, .json, .lib, .m3u,
.m4a, .max, .mdb, .mid, .mov, .mp3, .mp4, .mpa, .ms11 .(Security .copy), .ms11, .msg, .nef, .obj,
.odg, .odt, .ogg, .p12, .pages, .pas, .pdb, .pdf, .pem, .php, .png, .pproj, .pps, .ppt, .pptm, .pptx,
.prproj, .ps1, .psd, .py, .qcow2, .rar, .rtf, .sfk, .sql, .sqlite, .svg, .tar, .text, .tif, .tiff,
.torrent, .txt, .vbox, .vbs, .vdi, .veg, .vmdk, .vmx, .wallet, .wav, .wma, .wmv, .wpd, .wps, .wsf, .xlm,
.xls, .xlsb, .xlsm, .xlsx, .xml, .zip

The module runs a strong cipher that encrypts all target files with the .saturn extension. Once this is done a ransomware note is created in several files: #DECRYPT_MY_FILES#.txt, #DECRYPT_MY_FILES#.html and #DECRYPT_MY_FILES.BMP. If they are opened the ransomware note will be displayed that reads the following message:

SATURN RANSOMWARE

All of your files have been encrypted!
Your photos, videos, documents, etc.
To decrypt your files follow these steps:

1. Downlod and Install ATor Browser from https://www.torproject.org
2. Run it and open website:
http://su34pwhpcafeiztt.onion
3. Follow the instructions on the site.
———————————————————————

Remove .saturn Virus and Restore PC

WARNING! Manual removal of the .saturn 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

.saturn 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 .saturn 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.

run-window-windows

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

appwiz-cpl-command-run-windows

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“.

uninstall-malicious-software-control-panel-programs-features-windows

Remove .saturn 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“.
    add-ons-mozilla-removal-browser-hijacker-guide

    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“.
    remove-suspicious-extensions-mozilla-removal-browser-hijacker-guide

    3. Click again on the Open menu icon, then click “Options“.
    options-mozilla-firefox-removal-browser-hijacker-guide

    4. In the Options window, under “General” tab, click “Restore to Default“.
    restore-to-default-settings-mozilla-firefox-removal-guide-browser-hijacker

    5. Select “Search” in the left menu, mark the unknown search engine and press “Remove”.
    search-remove-unknown-search-engine-mozilla-firefox-removal-guide-browser-hijacker

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

    settings-google-chrome-browser-hijacker-removal-guide

    2. Click “Extensions” in the left menu. Then click on the trash bin icon to remove the suspicious extension.
    delete-suspicious-extension-google-chrome-browser-hijacker-removal-guide

    3. Again in the left menu, under Chrome, Click on “Settings“. Go under “On Startup” and set a new page.
    set-new-page-google-chrome-browser-hijacker-removal-guide

    4. Afterward, scroll down to “Search“, click on “Manage search engines“.
    manage-search-engines-google-chrome-browser-hijacker-removal-guide

    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“.
manage-add-ons-internet-explorer-removal-browser-hijacker-bestsecuritysearch

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“.
remove-suspicious-toolbars--internet-explorer-removal-browser-hijacker

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”.
search-providers-set-engine-delete-suspicious-internet-explorer-removal-browser-hijacker

4. Open the Tools menu, select “Internet Options”.
internet-options-internet-explorer-removal-browser-hijacker

5. In the “General” tab, in “Home page”, enter your preferred page. Click “Apply” and “OK”.
enter-preferred-homepage-internet-explorer-removal-browser-hijacker

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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