Remove GandCrab 5.0.5 Ransomware — Restore Your PC Instructions

GandCrab 5.0.5 ransom image bestsecuritysearch

An infection with the dangerous GandCrab 5.0.5 ransomware virus leads to serious security issues. With our removal guide, victims can try to secure their computers and restore encrypted files.

Manual Removal Guide
Files Recovery Approaches
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Note for Mac users!
In case that your Mac has been affected by GandCbrab 5.0.5 or you suspect that other threats are running on it you can follow detailed instructions on how to detect and remove Mac viruses so you can keep the device clean and secure.

Distribution of GandCrab 5.0.5 Ransomware Virus

GandCrab 5.0.5 crypto virus is the latest iteration of GandCrab ransomware family. This version of the devastating data locker ransomware has been recently released in attack campaigns against computer users worldwide. Threat actors could be utilizing widely used tactics of distribution to infect computer systems.

Previous versions of the GandCrab ransomware family were found to make abuse systems by leveraging the CVE-2018-8120 vulnerability. This is a critical issue found in both desktop and server versions of the Windows operating system allowing hackers to run arbitrary code (the virus code) in kernel mode. The consequences of this is that the installed code will have complete access to the compromised system.

Other methods used by the malicious actors behind GandCrab 5.0.5 include the coordination of SPAM email messages — they are used to spread the threat by sending out messages that pose as legitimate notifications sent by popular Internet portals or services that the targets may use. The virus files can be either directly attached or linked in the body. They can also be uploaded to fake download sites which are designed to appear like any of the popular Internet portals or vendor download sites. The malicious actors may use similar sounding domain names, certificates and hijacked design and contents to coerce the victims into thinking that they are accessing the legitimate address.

Another way that the threat may spread is through infected payloads — the use of various files that are infected with virus code. A popular example is the malicious document which can take any form: presentations, rich text files, spreadsheets and databases. Once they are opened by the victims a notification message will pop-up asking the target users to enable the built-in scripts. If this is done the virus infection will follow. The other popular technique is the inclusion of the code in application installers. They are malicious copies of legitimate setup files of popular end user programs that have been modified with the GandCrab 5.0.5 ransomware code.

Ransomware files are also popularly spread by fake user profiles — they can post to community forums or social media accounts. The criminals can utilize both fake or stolen identities to increase the number of infected users.

In certain cases the criminals may also be distributed via malicious browser plugins — additions to the most popular web browsers that are advertised as useful. The plugins are uploaded to the official repositories and often make use of fake or hijacked user reviews and developer credentials. Once they are installed by the users they will execute their built-in instructions that in many cases leads to the GandCrab 5.0.5 ransomware virus infection in the end.

Impact of GandCrab 5.0.5 Ransomware Virus

GandCrab 5.0.5 ransomware virus is the latest from the creators of this notorious threat. Soon after security experts at BitDefender have released a free decryption tool that works for all previous versions including GandCrab v2, GandCrab v3, GandCrab v4, GandCrab v4.1, GandCrab v5, GandCrab 5.0.1, GandCrab 5.0.2, and GandCrab 5.0.3, GandCrab 5.0.4, all of which are associated with different extensions and infection patterns, threat actors created new iteration of the threat could not be decrypted by the tool.

When first started on a target host, the payload of GandCrab 5.0.5 ransomware will trigger a sequence of malicious activities that aim to plague the system and enable the threat to reach data encryption stage. According to the available reports, it will begin the infection only if it succeeds to mute or evade running security applications as they can block its correct execution. This is done by analyzing the system and searching for signatures of anti-virus engines, debug environments and virtual machine hosts. Whenever they are detected their associated real-time engines will be shut down or entirely deleted from the computers.

Next, GandCrab 5.0.5 ransomware virus could attempt to connect its command and control in order to download additional malicious data needed for the completion of attack phases. It is also possible that its code could be configured to create malicious files directly on the system.

Soon after the ransomware activates its additional malicious files it becomes able to corrupt specific system components that for example will enable its automatic execution on each system start. For the purpose GandCrab 5.0.5 ransomware virus needs to access the Registry Editor and add its associated values under some important registry keys. The ransomware usually plagues the Run and RunOnce sub-keys as they manage the automatic load of all essential system files and processes that need to be executed on each system start.

Once the ransomware is ready with all system modifications it could continue with the data encryption phase. In order to complete it, the ransomware uses a built-in module that contains a sophisticated encryption algorithm which is likely to be the same as in previous versions – Salsa20. After this algorithm rewrites parts of the original code of target files these files become inaccessible.

Unfortunately, to make victims more prone to pay the ransom, ransomware authors configure their malicious code to scan the system for all commonly used types of files as they are likely to store valuable information. So in case that you are a victim of this new GandCrab version 5.0.5, you may have all your documents, images, videos, projects, archives, and other valuable files locked.

Corrupted files could be recognized by the distinctive extension appended to their names. As reported by security experts, it contains five random letters which are uniquely generated for each victim.

Following encryption GandCrab 5.0.5 replaces current desktop wallpaper with its own one that informs the following:

ENCRYPTED BY GANDCRAB 5.0.5
DEAR [USER] YOUR FILES ARE UNDER STRONG PROTECTION BY OUR SOFTWARE IN ORDER TO RESTORE IT YOU MUST BUY DECRYPTIOR
For further steps read [extension letters].DECRYPT.txt that is located in every encrypted folder.

Here is how the image looks like:

GandCrab 5.0.5 ransom image bestsecuritysearch

As stated by this wallpaper, you could find a ransom note file your extension-DECRYPT.txt in each folder that contains encrypted files. The message presented by this file informs you about the presence of GandCrab 5.0.5 on your system and blackmails you into paying a ransom in Bitcoins to hackers. The whole message reads:

—= GANDCRAB V5.0.5 =—
Attention!
All your files, documents, photos, databases and other important files are encrypted and have the extension: {5 random letters}
The only method of recovering files is to purchase an unique private key. Only we can give you this key and only we can recover your files.
The server with your key is in a closed network TOR. You can get there by the following ways:
———————————————————————–
| 0. Download Tor browser – https://www.torproject.org/
| 1. Install Tor Browser
| 2. Open Tor Browser
| 3. Open link in TOR browser http://gandcrabmfe6mnef.onion/{victim’s unique ID}
| 4. Follow the instructions on this page
On our page you will see instructions on payment and get the opportunity to decrypt 1 file for free.
ATTENTION!
IN ORDER TO PREVENT DATA DAMAGE:
• DO NOT MODIFY ENCRYPTED FILES
• DO NOT CHANGE DATA BELOW

Beware that paying the ransom does not guarantee files restoration. Happily, you can restore your PC and potentially restore some encrypted files with the help of our how to guide listed below.

Remove GandCrab 5.0.5 Ransomware Virus and Restore PC

Please note that paying the requested ransom fee to cyber criminals does not really solve your problem with GandCrab 5.0.5 crypto virus. In fact, you only encourage hackers to continue spreading ransomware of this kind. Instead, you must remove the threat immediately, and only then look for optional ways to recover your data.

WARNING! Manual removal of GandCbrab 5.0.5 ransomware 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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GandCbrab 5.0.5 Ransomware 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 below 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

Show Hidden Files

Some ransomware threats are designed to hide their malicious files in the Windows so all files stored on the system should be visible.

1. Open My Computer/This PC

2. Windows 7

    – Click on Organize button
    – Select Folder and search options
    – Select the View tab
    – Go under Hidden files and folders and mark Show hidden files and folders option

3. Windows 8/ 10

    – Open View tab
    – Mark Hidden items option

how to make hidden files visible in Windows 8 10 bestsecuritysearch instructions

4. Click Apply and then OK button

Enter Windows Task Manager and Stop Malicious Processes

1. Hit the following key combination: CTRL+SHIFT+ESC

2. Get over to Processes

3. When you find suspicious process right click on it and select Open File Location

4. Go back to Task Manager and end the malicious process. Right click on it again and choose End Process

5. Next, you should go folder where the malicious file is located and delete it

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

Recover Encrypted Files

WARNING! All files and objects associated with GandCbrab 5.0.5 ransomware virus should be removed from the infected PC before any data recovery attempts. Otherwise the virus may encrypt restored files. Furthermore, a backup of all encrypted files stored on external media is highly recommendable.

DOWNLOAD SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool

 
SpyHunter is a Windows application designed to scan for, identify, remove and block malware, potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) and other objects. By purchasing the full version, you will be able to remove detected malware instantly. Additional information about SpyHunter / Help to uninstall SpyHunter

1. Use present backups

2. Use professional data recovery software

Stellar Phoenix Data Recovery – a specialist tool that can restore partitions, data, documents, photos, and 300 more file types lost during various types of incidents and corruption.

3. Using System Restore Point

    – Hit WIN Key
    – Select “Open System Restore” and follow the steps

restore-files-using-windows-system-restore-point

4. Restore your personal files using File History

    – Hit WIN Key
    – Type restore your files in the search box
    – Select Restore your files with File History
    – Choose a folder or type the name of the file in the search bar
    – Hit the “Restore” button

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.
  • Gergana Ivanova

    Author : Gergana Ivanova

    Gergana Ivanova is computer security enthusiast who enjoys presenting the latest issues related to cyber security.


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