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How to Remove Kuntzware Ransomware

How to Remove Kuntzware Ransomware?

Kuntzware is a dangerous ransomware virus. It is named after its executable file “Kuntz.exe.” This virus is a typical member of its family. It sneaks into its victims’ computers unnoticed and wreaks havoc. Once on board, in complete silence, Kuntzware scans the HDD. It locates all target files and locks them with the strong AES-256 encryption algorithm. All encrypted files are then renamed. The virus adds the “.kuntzware” file extension. Thus, if you have a file named example.jpg, the virus will rename it to example.jpg.kuntzware. This parasite can encrypt over fifty file formats. Yet, it seems that prioritizes user-generated files. Thus, your pictures, documents, videos, and archives will be encrypted first. What is interesting about this ransomware is the fact that it can encrypt files stored on clouds. This makes the file recovery quite difficult. You can’t use system backups stored on your cloud. And if you download an infected file on another device, you will spread the virus. The Kuntzware ransomware is still under development. The current version of the virus is not able to connect to its Command and Control server. Hence, it cannot carry out the attack effectively. The victims cannot receive neither information about the demanded ransom nor instructions on how it should be paid. Usually, ransomware viruses demand between $500 and $1500 USD paid in Bitcoins.

How did I get infected with?

The most common ransomware distribution method is via corrupted spam email attachments. You must have heard it a hundred times, you will have to hear it one more time. Do not open emails from strangers. Crooks are imaginative. They write on behalf of well-known organizations and companies. They will not hesitate to steal logos and fabricate logos just to lure you into downloading a file. Yet, the attachments are not the only thing they can corrupt. They can embed malicious code in the body of the email itself. The code exploits vulnerabilities in your email client and OS. It all takes one click for the code to be executed. At the moment you open such a letter, a stealthy download executes. It will download the virus directly on your computer. Thus, before you open an email, check the sender’s contacts. Simply, enter the questionable email address into some search engine. If it was used for shady business, someone might have complained about it. Yet, this method is not flawless. New emails are created every day. If you a part of the first wave of spam messages, there may not be any evidence online. Therefore, double-check the sender. If you receive a letter from an organization, go to their official website. There, under the contact section, you will be able to find their authorized email addresses. Compare them with the one you have received a message from. If they don’t match, delete the spam email immediately. Other virus distribution techniques include malvertising, torrents, bundling and fake software updates. A little extra caution can prevent these techniques from succeeding.

Remove Kuntzware

Why is Kuntzware dangerous?

The Kuntzware Ransomware is extremely dangerous. Not only does it encrypt the files saved on your HDD, it can also corrupt the files saved on your cloud. The virus is still under development. It has the potential to become one of the most dangerous ransomware viruses. Currently, the virus does not demand a ransom. It cannot connect to its Command and Control server. Thus, it cannot give its victims a way to pay the ransom. However, the hackers are working on it. If you get infected with a newer version of the virus, we recommend against paying the ransom. First of all, as you can see, the hackers have problems with the virus. They may not be able to restore your files. Second, do not forget that you are dealing with criminals. No one can guarantee you that they will keep their part of the deal. Hackers tend to ignore the victims once they receive the money. And last but not least, even if you pay, even if you receive a decryption tool, this tool may not be able to restore all your files. There are many cases where the victims received only partly working tools. If such an event occurs, you cannot ask for a refund. Consider discarding your data. Start backing up your system regularly and, of course, keep the backup copy saved on an offline device. This way you will be prepared if the Kuntzware Ransomware strikes again.

Kuntzware Removal Instructions

STEP 1: Kill the Malicious Process

STEP 2: Reveal Hidden Files

STEP 3: Locate Startup Location

STEP 4: Recover Kuntzware Encrypted Files

STEP 1: Stop the malicious process using Windows Task Manager

  • Open your task Manager by pressing CTRL+SHIFT+ESC keys simultaneously
  • Locate the process of the ransomware. Have in mind that this is usually a random generated file.
  • Before you kill the process, type the name on a text document for later reference.

end-malicious-process

  • Locate any suspicious processes associated with Kuntzware encryption Virus.
  • Right click on the process
  • Open File Location
  • End Process
  • Delete the directories with the suspicious files.
  • Have in mind that the process can be hiding and very difficult to detect

STEP 2: Reveal Hidden Files

  • Open any folder
  • Click on “Organize” button
  • Choose “Folder and Search Options”
  • Select the “View” tab
  • Select “Show hidden files and folders” option
  • Uncheck “Hide protected operating system files”
  • Click “Apply” and “OK” button

STEP 3: Locate Kuntzware encryption Virus startup location

  • Once the operating system loads press simultaneously the Windows Logo Button and the R key.

win-plus-r

Depending on your OS (x86 or x64) navigate to:

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run] or
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run] or
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run]

  • and delete the display Name: [RANDOM]

delete backgroundcontainer

  • Then open your explorer and navigate to:

Navigate to your %appdata% folder and delete the executable.

You can alternatively use your msconfig windows program to double check the execution point of the virus. Please, have in mind that the names in your machine might be different as they might be generated randomly, that’s why you should run any professional scanner to identify malicious files.

STEP 4: How to recover encrypted files?

  • Method 1: The first and best method is to restore your data from a recent backup, in case that you have one.

windows system restore

  • Method 2: File Recovery Software – Usually when the ransomware encrypts a file it first makes a copy of it, encrypts the copy, and then deletes the original. Due to this you may try to use file recovery software to recover some of your original files.
  • Method 3: Shadow Volume Copies – As a last resort, you can try to restore your files via Shadow Volume Copies. Open the Shadow Explorer part of the package and choose the Drive you want to recover. Right click on any file you want to restore and click Export on it.
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