I wrote this article to help you remove Serpent Ransomware. This Serpent Ransomware removal guide works for all Windows versions.
Ransomware parasites are considered the most dreaded cyber infection out there. They totally deserve this reputation as they have become a quite successful money-making illegitimate industry. Unfortunately, newer and newer ransomware strains are being developed every single day. One of these new pieces is the Serpent infection which researchers stumbled across a couple of days ago.
Serpent shows some features very similar to the Hades Locker ransomware. It also resembles Zyklon and Wildfire. The single fact that Serpent is a ransomware makes it incredibly dangerous. The infection pretty much follows the classic ransomware pattern Invade, Encrypt, Extort. Needless to say, money is what all ransomware pieces are after. Your money, to be more precise. So, keep on reading in order to understand what you are dealing with. Let`s go step by step.
What Serpent does first is to sneak into your machine in complete silence. And it does so quite successfully, like a snake. There are a several tactics which the pest could use to get it. Number one method includes spam email messages and attachments. This is an old but gold infiltration method. Do you often receive emails from unknown senders with files attached to them? You probably do. What is crucial is that you must never open them.
All the crooks have to do is to attach they parasite to an email and you do the rest by opening said email and downloading its malicious attachments. Delete all messages from people that you don’t personally know. More often than not, they deliver malware. The same rule applies for messages in social media. Be more careful. You didn’t invite this pest on your PC and yet, it is still there. Also, stay away from unverified download sources and illegitimate pages. A ransomware could even use the help of a Trojan horse to get in. Don’t forget that prevention is much easier that dealing with an infection while it is currently destroying your machine. Be vigilant. Don’t click blindly on everything that comes your way. Moreover, get yourself a reliable anti-malware program to help you stay protected.
Step two is the actual encryption process. Once Serpent enters it doesn’t waste any time. It performs a scan of your machine searching for all of your personal files and documents. Of course, it doesn’t take long before it finds everything. All of your pictures, music, videos, MS Office files, presentations, data, work-related documents, etc. get locked. Serpent relies on the RSA-2048 and AES-256 algorithm to encrypt everything you have stored on your PC. The encryption renders your data completely inaccessible. You are no longer able to open/edit/watch/listen to any of the locked files.
To solidify its hold over your data, Serpent also appends a brand new extension at the end of each encrypted file. For example, a file called music.mp3 after being locked becomes mucis.mp3.serpent. Seeing this appendix means that the locking process has finished. It also means that your files have been turned into unusable gibberish. Nothing you do can change that. Not renaming them, not moving them into another folder. This is the moment when you can easily panic and when you do, the ransomware makes its final move. The extortion.
Serpent drops the HOW_TO_DECRYPT_YOUR_FILES_Dn6.txt and HOW_TO_DECRYPT_YOUR_FILES_Dn6.html. files in each folder containing encrypted data as well as on your desktop. Those are the ransom notes. They explain your situation and provide detailed payment instructions. As we said, ransomware`s goal is money. So, according to the hackers, the only way of freeing your files is by obtaining a special decryption key. Of course, this key doesn’t come for free. It also doesn’t come cheap. The hackers demand 0.75 bitcoins, which equals more than 900 USD at the moment. Moreover, you have a deadline of one week and if you don’t make the payment the sum rises to 2.25 bitcoins or around 2700 USD.
As you can see, this is a lot of money. But what is even worse is that even if you pay, there is no guarantee that the crooks will keep their end of the bargain and send you the tool. Usually, they don’t deliver. They just take your money and use it to expand their business, create more malware and infect more people. So, whatever you do, don’t pay up. There is big chance that you will end up double-crossed with less money and still encrypted data. Don’t sponsor these cybercriminals. Instead, use our removal guide below and get rid of the Serpent for good.
Serpent Ransomware Removal
Method 1: Restore your encrypted files using ShadowExplorer
Usually, Serpent 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 Serpent 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: