I wrote this article to help you remove ForceLocker Ransomware. This ForceLocker Ransomware removal guide works for all Windows versions.
ForceLocker ransomware was discovered recently by security researchers. This win-locker targets computers located in Russia. It drops a ransom note written in Russian. It contains a harsh message which aims to intimidate victims and make them pay the cyber criminals. This is the purpose of the clandestine program. Its developers make proceeds by swindling people. ForceLocker ransomware encrypts files and asks people to pay a certain sum to have them decrypted. The hackers threaten to keep your data permanently inaccessible if you refuse to meet their demands.
ForceLocker ransomware uses AES-256 cipher to locks files. AES stands for advanced encryption standard, while the number indicates the bit rate. This encryption algorithm is symmetric. It is often used by win-lockers because of its high effectiveness. Cryptography works by rendering the coding scheme of targeted files in a specific pattern. ForceLocker ransomware encrypts documents, images, audios, videos, databases, archives, and other types of files. It appends the .L0cked extension to their original names. Their icons will change to the default blank thumbnail for unfamiliar formats. This is the best way to recognize encrypted objects.
The ransom note of ForceLocker ransomware is titled help_your_files.html. The nefarious program includes a shortcut to it in all folders which contain encrypted files. The message explains what has occurred and tells the victim what they are required to do to have their files restored back to normal. ForceLocker ransomware produces a set of keys. The public key locks vulnerable objects, while the private key can unlock them. People are required a pay a ransom to receive the latter. Before making the payment, you have to contact the developers of the win-locker. They have not provided complete instructions in the ransom note.
The creators of ForceLocker ransomware use the email account email@example.com to correspond with their victims. When you send them a message, you will receive a response with the payment address and the amount of the sum you need to transfer. We do not have information about the amount of the ransom yet, not do we know how the cyber criminals receive the money. This is important, since the transaction method is detrimental for the risk level. Most win-locker vendors select a secure payment method, like a cryptocurrency. Bitcoins are the most common choice. The platforms which sell them provide optimal security. The transaction cannot be traced. The identity of the recipients is protected.
Paying hackers is risky. There is no guarantee that they will complete their end of the deal. The best course of action is to delete ForceLocker ransomware with the help of an anti-virus utility and try to recover the lost data on you own. This may be possible if the win-locker has not erased the shadow volume copies of the encrypted objects. A lot of win-lockers eliminate them to prevent people from finding an alternative solution. If they are intact, the free tools we have listed below may be able to help you recover them.
To protect your computer from attacks, you need to be cautious about your online sources and your correspondence. ForceLocker ransomware is most commonly distributed through spam emails. The covert program travels hidden behind an attached file. The sender will describe the attachment as a document and ask you to open it right away. He will try to make the notification sound important, so that you would hurry to access the file. You should never neglect security because of haste. Take the time to proof the reliability of the letter. Be advised that spammers often write on behalf of existing organizations, like the national post, the district police department, courier firms, banks, institutions, and government branches. To confirm that the sender is who he claims to be, check his contacts.
Other ways to contract ForceLocker ransomware is via bundles and drive-by installation. The latter occurs when visiting a corrupted website or following a compromised link. The domain will process the download and install of the secluded program. You should be careful about the website you trust and the content they provide. Freeware, shareware, and pirated programs can also host ForceLocker ransomware. The win-locker can be installed in parallel with them. The download client will list the insidious program under a fake name and offer it as a bonus tool. To avoid allowing infections into your computer, read the terms and conditions of the programs you intend to make use of.
ForceLocker Ransomware Removal
Method 1: Restore your encrypted files using ShadowExplorer
Usually, ForceLocker Ransomware deletes all shadow copies, stored in your computer. Luckily, the ransomware is not always able to delete the shadow copies. So your first try should be restoring the original files from shadow copies.
- Download ShadowExplorer from this link: http://www.shadowexplorer.com/downloads.html.
- Install ShadowExplorer
- Open ShadowExplorer and select C: drive on the left panel
- Choose at least a month ago date from the date field
- Navigate to the folder with encrypted files
- Right-click on the encrypted file
- Select “Export” and choose a destination for the original file
Method 2: Restore your encrypted files by using System Restore
- Go to Start –> All programs –> Accessories –> System tools –> System restore
- Click “Next“
- Choose a restore point, at least a month ago
- Click “Next“
- Choose Disk C: (should be selected by default)
- Click “Next“. Wait for a few minutes and the restore should be done.
Method 3: Restore your files using File Recovery Software
If none of the above method works, you should try to recover encrypted files by using File Recovery Software. Since ForceLocker Ransomware first makes a copy of the original file, then encrypts it and deletes the original one, you can successfully restore the original, using a File Recovery Software. Here are a few free File Recovery Software programs: