Remove Hearthstone Ransomware

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

Hearthstone falls under the category of ransomware. Yes, it is a part of the cyber infection family, which is considered the worst of all threats lurking on the Web. As a member, Hearthstone doesn’t differentiate from its relatives when it comes to ways of operation. It follows the standard pattern of three steps. Step 1 – invasion. Step 2 – encryption. Step 3 – extortion. All ransomware`s main goal is getting a hold of your money. This one is no exception. It can and will make you regret not deleting it on time. Do not waste precious minutes. Take action now.

Hearthstone finds its way into your system completely undetected. You won`t know that it is there until it decides to reveal itself to you. But it doesn’t do that right away. After having infected you, Hearthstone proceeds to finish with step 2. The encryption process. The ransomware performs a scan on your machine and finds all the files, which are valuable to you. Then, it locks them using a strong encryption algorithm. You should know, nothing is beyond its reach. It can get to anything. All of your pictures, music, videos, Word files, work-related documents, etc. After Hearthstone is done with them, they are no longer accessible to you. It changes their names by adding a malicious extension and your PC is unable to recognize them. They are not gone. You still see their icons but you cannot open or watch or listen to any of them. Well, that equals not having them at all, doesn’t it?

Only after it has finished locking your data, the Hearthstone ransomware notifies you of its presence. It does that by dropping a TXT file on your desktop as well as in every folder containing encrypted files. This is the ransom note. A message from the crooks behind Hearthstone in which they explain what has happened and what their demands are. A message like this usually reads: “all of your files have been encrypted and if you wish to get them back, send (amount of money in Bitcoins) to the following address” or something like that. The crooks really want you to understand the situation you are in so you would panic. The rest of the ransom note includes detailed instructions on how to make the payment.

Remove Hearthstone Ransomware
The Hearthstone Ransomware

Usually, you are asked to pay in Bitcoins, which is an untraceable online currency and the transaction cannot be followed. The amount of money (the ransom) normally varies from 0.5 to 1.5 Bitcoins. If you are not familiar with Bitcoins you should now that 1 Bitcoin equals approximately 500 or 600 US Dollars. Not a small sum at all. And the crooks claim that if you pay you will get the decryption tool in exchange, which will help you recover all your locked data. However, even if you were asked to pay only $1, you have zero guarantees that you will get what you paid for. Not to mention what could happen if you pay the sum they really want. You can end up double-crossed – with no money and no files.

Making a deal with cybercriminals is not a smart decision. They only care about ripping you off and couldn’t care less about you precious files. There are many cases of victims paying and not receiving a decryptor. Don’t be one of this cases. Besides, paying means supporting the crooks` business. Do you really want to become a sponsor? All of your money will go directly into developing more malware so more and more people could be infected and blackmailed.

Don’t help hackers expand this illegitimate industry. And, like all of this isn’t enough to convince you paying is not an option, there is more you should know. By paying, you open the door for your privacy to these people. You voluntarily give the access to your private life. Your identifiable and financial information will be at their disposal. I cannot think of a scenario in which all of this ends well for you. Luckily, we have a solution for you. Our removal guide below will help you get rid of this plague as well as help you retrieve your data. And you do not have to pay even a cent. All you need to do is follow the instructions.

How did Hearthstone infect you? This is the million dollar question. Well, you let it in. Yes, you are the one responsible for your current situation. These infections need your permission upon installment and, given the circumstances, you must have given Hearthstone your consent at some point. If you don’t allow it to enter, it simply cannot enter. But, don’t rush blaming yourself. Since it needs your approval, Hearthstone asks for it. Not straightforward, of course. It uses tricks to dupe you.

Tricks like freeware, spam email attachments, corrupted links, fake program updates. It uses one of them to go in unnoticed and your carelessness makes that possible. By carelessness I mean rushing installations, not reading Terms and Conditions/EULA, not being careful what you agree with, opening strange emails without thinking twice about it, clicking lightly on any add/torrent/link you see, etc.

Also, if you are one of those users who opt for the Basic settings instead of the Advanced ones during an installation only because they give them speed, the risk of infection jumps. The Advanced setting may take more time but they give you full control over the process meaning you are free to deselect any program which looks suspicious. Now, do you understand how being negligent doesn’t help you at all? Your carelessness is what infections need and pray for the most. Don’t provide it and stay safe.

Hearthstone Ransomware Uninstall

Method 1: Restore your encrypted files using ShadowExplorer
Usually, Hearthstone 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: http://www.shadowexplorer.com/downloads.html.
  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 Hearthstone 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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