I wrote this article to help you remove Crystalcrypt Ransomware. This Crystalcrypt Ransomware removal guide works for all Windows versions.
Crystalcrypt is a ransomware and if you are infected with it, you are in for a bad time. Ransomware infections are, without a doubt, the most dangerous cyber parasites. And they totally deserve their horrible reputation. The whole ransomware industry was created for only one purpose – to help cybercriminals earn effortless profits at victims` expense. And that’s exactly what they do. Crystalcrypt, as a classic member, doesn’t differentiate with anything. It is also after your money and it relies on the same operations tactic to get it.
For starters, the pest enters your machine behind your back. We will explain exactly how a little bit later. Then, once it, it doesn’t waste any time and immediately encrypts your private files. Yes, all of your sensitive data falls victim to the infection. We are talking pictures, music, videos, documents, MS Office files, and pretty much whatever else you ca think of. Everything gets locked with a strong encryption algorithm and you no longer have access to it. You cannot open or read or edit any of the targeted files. And you probably have some very important data among the locked ones.
Most users keep really valuable information on their machine. And now the ransomware took it, hoping that you would do anything to get it back. Moreover, to solidify its hold over your files, Crystalcrypt appends the “.BLOCKED” extension to each locked file. Seeing this appendix means that the encryption process is over and your data has been turned into unusable gibberish.
Then, Crystalcrypt proceeds to step number three. The extortion. The infection drops a note for you, explaining what has happened and how to recover your data. Of course, decryption involves money. The crooks claim that if you pay them 0.17 Bitcoins (currently $425), they will send you a decryption tool to retrieve your files. Sounds fair enough. But it is not. These people are the ones who encrypted your data in the first place and now they are trying to help you.
The Crystalcrypt Ransomware
Also, who`s to say that they will keep their end of the deal? Nobody. There are no guarantees what you will get what you paid for whatsoever. For all you know, you may end up with less money and still locked files. Cybercriminals cannot be trusted. They don’t care about freeing your data. If they did, they wouldn’t have locked it in the first place. They only care about money. Don’t pay. It is not worth it. Even if you do get the decryptor and unlock your files, Crystalcrypt still remains on board ready to send you back to square one anytime.
The decryptor only removes the encryption, not the infection. You can get everything re-encrypted hours after having freed it. Don’t take that risk. Moreover, don’t take the risk of hackers getting a hold of your personal and financial credentials. By paying the ransom, you do exactly that. You are giving them access to information they should not have. Forget about complying as it is a lose-lose situation for you. Instead, use our removal guide at the end of this article and clean your PC of Crystalcrypt. Then, you can try to recover your files without a risk of them being encrypted again. And a piece of advice, consider keeping backups of your most important data. When it comes to ransomware, thinking in advance is what can save you.
We already said that Crystalcrypt enters your PC behind your back. It turns to the usual means of infiltration like spam email messages, freeware bundles, corrupted pages/links, fake program updates, third-party ads, etc. The pest can even use the help of a Trojan to sneak in. This is why you need to be extra careful online. The web is full of infection and they are all waiting for you to do the wrong move.
Be more vigilant. Don’t easily agree to everything. For example, when you are installing an update, take your time to read the Terms and Conditions. You may think you are updating Java, while, in fact, you are inviting a pest on board. Hackers pray for your carelessness. Without it, they cannot succeed. So, don’t grant it and keep your computer infection-free.
Method 1: Restore your encrypted files using ShadowExplorer
Usually, Crystalcrypt 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 Crystalcrypt 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: