Zepto Ransomware Debuts as Locky’s Successor

Zepto is among the new types of ransomware attacks cropping up during this month. It is considered as the very latest version of ransomware which hits internet users and thus far, there’s not enough information on the virus or how the victims are becoming infected.

Security researchers claim that Zepto ransomware turns out to be a version of Locky ransomware which is changing the file name of encrypted files to .zepto. Considering the fact that Locky infections were reported to be down in first weeks of June, it appears that with Zepto, they may be making a comeback now.

Similarly to Locky, Zepto ransomware infects your computer via spam message from unknown/known senders, spam email-attachments, malicious torrents, dangerous websites, flash player vulnerabilities, etc. Usually, the virus pretends to be a legitimate email from a shipping company, or a job application. This is how the ransomware tricks you into opening the infected email.

After that, Zepto ransomware encrypts and renames all the files, stored on your PC, adding a unique combination of 16 symbols (consisting of both letters and numbers) to your files. This is your ID. In order to locate your personal information, the threat scans your computer first. Thanks to the scan, the virus finds all pictures, music, MS Office documents, videos, etc stored on the PC.

Ransomware takes down a huge variety of file formats so nothing you’ve stored on your computer is safe. It encrypts .mp3, .mp4, .jpg, .jpeg, .pdf, .ppt, .gif, .txt, .doc, .docx files, etc. Unfortunately, the attackers have no reason to take care of your data. Just the opposite – hackers rely on the fact that you’ll have something important encrypted in order to pay the ransom. This is how you get scammed.

While locking your files, the virus provides detailed payment instructions. According to these ransom messages, you have to pay a certain sum of money in Bitcoin to restore your files. The ransom note emphasizes that the only way to regain the access to your data is by following the hackers’ instructions.

Unfortunately, paying the ransom guarantees you nothing. What’s even worse in this case, is that if you pay, the attackers get an access to every piece of your private information. At the same time, the hackers would not hesitate before they use your own data against you.

The main problem with Zepto is that it is a newly-found ransomeware, thus there is currently no way of decrypting the files encrypted. The only option for recovering these files is to have a back-up available or pay the demanded ransom. Though, users are never advised to pay ransom to hackers, unless there is nothing else they could do.

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