Ransomware Removal

I wrote this article to help you remove Ransomware. This Ransomware removal guide works for all Windows versions.

It is absolutely true that newer and newer ransomware pieces are being developed every single day. However, what else is true is that sometimes crooks just take previously created infections and improve them to be even more destructive that before. This is the case with the notorious Dharma ransomware. It was first spotted in November last year but the cybercriminals have drastically upgraded it since then. So, what you are currently stuck with is a brand new Dharma variant.

As a classic ransomware piece, Dharma follows a pretty standard pattern. First, of course, it slithers in your system undetected but we will get to that later on. Now, let`s focus on what the pest does once on board. Unsurprisingly, the ransomware`s first task is to perform a thorough scan on your machine in search for your private files. And it does finds them all. Your pictures, your music, your video, Word files… pretty much everything you have stored on your PC. After locating them, Dharma encrypts them with a strong AES encryption algorithm. It makes a copy of everything and them deletes the original. So, what you are left with are just inaccessible, locked copies. You cannot open any of them, your machine cannot recognize them. They have been turned into useless empty icons.

Also, each of your files has the pesky “.wallet” extension appended at its end. Seeing this add-on means that the encryption process has finished and all your data is being kept hostage by the infamous Dharma. It goes without saying that there might be some incredibly important files among the locked ones. Work-related stuff, for instance. In a situation like this, it is very easy for a person to panic. Being denied access to all of your files all of a sudden can make you think that you will do anything it takes. Don’t rush making that decision. Once everything you own is locked by Dharma, the ransomware makes its next move. It drops its ransom note and changes your wallpaper as well. This message is from the crooks explaining your very unpleasant situation and providing information on how to get anything back.

Remove Ransomware
The Ransomware

Isn’t it ironic that the people who did this to you are now trying to help you? Of course, it is. But it is not true. The last thing these crooks want is to help you. On the contrary, they are trying to scam you. All they want is your money. This is the only reason ransomware has been created in the first place. So, the cybercriminals claim that the only way of recovering your data is by obtaining a special decryption key, which, of course, doesn’t come for free. You are supposed to get in touch with them via the email address to receive detailed payment instructions. If you pay them a hefty amount of money, they will they give you this key. Allegedly! Don’t forget that you can never be sure that they will actually send you one. You are dealing with crooks and crooks are not famous for being reliable and trustworthy. You could easily end up double-crossed.

There are many cases in which the victim pays and doesn’t receive anything or receives a tool which doesn’t work. And even is the tool does work and you use it to unlock your files, the ransomware itself remain intact. It is still on your machine ready to hit you again. Do you see why paying is not an option? There is no scenario in which you can win but there is a scenario in which you are helping these greedy crooks to expand their “business”. And, you are jeopardizing your privacy at the same time. Don’t fall into the crooks` trap. Instead, use our removal guide below. It is completely free and will help you remove this ransomware as well as recovering your data.

However, this time you were lucky that a removal guide like this is available. But this is not always the case. You should make sure that there won’t be another ransomware attack. Do your best to protect yourself and your machine. Ransomware uses different techniques to travel the Web. For example, sometimes a ransomware uses the help of a Trojan to get in. So, check your PC for other intruders as Dharma may not be alone.

Also, crooks haven`t forgotten about the spam email tactic. Sometimes a malicious email may get sent directly to your regular inbox posing as a legitimate one. For instance, it may seem to be a job application or an invoice from a shipping company but it is actually an infection. Don’t rush in opening any message you receive. It may be dangerous. Try to stay away from unverified pages/torrents/links, malicious third-party pop-ups, bogus program updates, etc. We recommend you get a reliable anti-malware program to help you stay protected. Get one, keep it up to date and regularly check your machine for infections. And last but not least, backing your most important is a good idea in case you are attacked by a ransomware again. Ransomware Removal

Method 1: Restore your encrypted files using ShadowExplorer
Usually, 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.

  1. Download ShadowExplorer from this link:
  2. Install ShadowExplorer
  3. Open ShadowExplorer and select C: drive on the left panelshadowexplorer
  4. Choose at least a month ago date from the date field
  5. Navigate to the folder with encrypted files
  6. Right-click on the encrypted file
  7. Select “Export” and choose a destination for the original file

Method 2: Restore your encrypted files by using System Restore

  1. Go to Start –> All programs –> Accessories –> System tools –> System restore
  2. Click “Nextsystem restore
  3. Choose a restore point, at least a month ago
  4. Click “Next
  5. Choose Disk C: (should be selected by default)
  6. 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 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:

  1. Recuva
  2. Puran File Recovery
  3. Disk Drill
  4. Glary Undelete

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