ADVMJ Virus (.advmj Files of Ransomware) — How to remove virus?

Written by Brendan Smith
The Advmj virus belongs under the CONTI ransomware family. Ransomware of such sort encrypts all the data on your PC (photos, text files, excel sheets, audio files, videos, etc) and adds its specific extension to every file, creating the readme.txt text files in every directory containing encrypted files.
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What is Advmj?

☝️ A strictly correct description for the Advmj is “a CONTI family ransomware-type infection”.

Advmj will add its own .advmj extension to every file’s name. For example, a file entitled “photo.jpg” will be altered to “photo.jpg.advmj”. Likewise, the Excel sheet with the name “table.xlsx” will be renamed to “table.xlsx.advmj”, and so forth.

In each folder with the encrypted files, a readme.txt file will be found. It is a ransom money note. It contains information on the ways of paying the ransom and some other remarks. The ransom note usually contains a description of how to buy the decryption tool from the tamperers. That is basically the scheme of the malefaction.

Advmj outline:
NameAdvmj Virus
Ransomware family1CONTI ransomware
Extension.advmj
Ransomware notereadme.txt
Detection2Win64:Malware-gen, Ransom.FileCryptor.Python.Generic, Win32/Filecoder.Conti.V
SymptomsYour files (photos, videos, documents) have a .advmj extension and you can’t open them.
Fix ToolSee If Your System Has Been Affected by Advmj virus

In the picture below, you can see what a directory with files encrypted by the Advmj looks like. Each filename has the “.advmj” extension added to it.

Advmj Virus - encrypted .advmj files

That is how encrypted “.advmj” files look.

How did Advmj ransomware end up on my PC?

There is a huge number of possible ways of ransomware injection.

There are currently three most popular ways for hackers to have the Advmj virus working in your system. These are email spam, Trojan introduction and peer-to-peer networks.

If you access your inbox and see emails that look like familiar notifications from utility services providers, postal agencies like FedEx, web-access providers, and whatnot, but whose “from” field is strange to you, be wary of opening those emails. They are most likely to have a malware item enclosed in them. Therefore, it is even riskier to download any attachments that come with emails like these.

Another option for ransom hunters is a Trojan horse model3. A Trojan is an object that gets into your computer disguised as something different. For instance, you download an installer of some program you need or an update for some service. However, what is unboxed reveals itself a harmful program that corrupts your data. As the update package can have any name and any icon, you have to make sure that you can trust the resource of the stuff you’re downloading. The optimal way is to trust the software developers’ official websites.

As for the peer networks like BitTorrent or eMule, the threat is that they are even more trust-based than the rest of the Internet. You can never know what you download until you get it. So you’d better be using trustworthy websites. Also, it is reasonable to scan the folder containing the downloaded files with the antivirus as soon as the downloading is complete.

How to remove the Advmj virus?

It is important to inform you that besides encrypting your files, the Advmj virus will probably deploy the Azorult Spyware on your computer to seize your credentials to various accounts (including cryptocurrency wallets). The mentioned program can extract your logins and passwords from your browser’s auto-filling data.

Sometimes criminals would decode several of your files so you know that they indeed have the decryption program. As Advmj virus is a relatively recent ransomware, anti-malware engineers have not yet found a way to reverse its work. Nevertheless, the anti-ransomware tools are frequently updated, so the effective countermeasure may soon arrive.

Of course, if the evildoers succeed in encrypting victim’s critical data, the hopeless person will probably fulfill their demands. However, paying a ransom gives no guarantee that you’re getting your data back. It is still dangerous. After getting the money, the racketeers may deliver a wrong decryption code to the victim. There were reports of hackers just disappearing after getting the ransom without even bothering to reply.

The optimal safety measure against ransomware is to have aan OS restore point or the copies of your essential files in the cloud storage or at least on an external storage. Of course, that might be not enough. Your most important thing could be that one you were working upon when it all started. Nevertheless, it is something. It is also advisable to scan your PC for viruses with the anti-malware utility after the system is rolled back.

There are other ransomware products, besides Advmj, that work similarly. Examples of those are Xcmb, Dehd, Hudf, and some others. The two main differences between them and the Advmj are the ransom amount and the encoding method. The rest is almost identical: files become encoded, their extensions changed, ransom notes are created in each directory containing encrypted files.

Some fortunate users were able to decode the blocked files with the aid of the free software provided by anti-malware developers. Sometimes the criminals accidentally send the decryption code to the victims in the ransom note. Such an extraordinary fail allows the injured part to restore the files. But naturally, one should never expect such a chance. Make no mistake, ransomware is a bandits’ instrument to lay their hands on the money of their victims.

How сan I avert ransomware injection?

Advmj ransomware has no superpower, so as any similar malware.

You can defend your computer from ransomware attack taking three easy steps:

  • Ignore any letters from unknown senders with strange addresses, or with content that has nothing to do with something you are waiting for (how can you win in a lottery without participating in it?). In case the email subject is likely something you are expecting, scrutinize all elements of the questionable letter carefully. A hoax letter will surely have a mistake.
  • Avoid using cracked or untrusted software. Trojan viruses are often shared as a part of cracked software, possibly as a “patch” which prevents the license check. But untrusted programs are very hard to tell from trustworthy ones, because trojans sometimes have the functionality you need. You can try to find information about this program on the anti-malware message boards, but the optimal solution is not to use such software.
  • And to be sure about the safety of the objects you downloaded, check them with GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This program will be a perfect armor for your PC.
Reasons why I would recommend GridinSoft4

There is no better way to recognize, remove and prevent ransomware than to use an anti-malware software from GridinSoft5.

Download Removal Tool.

You can download GridinSoft Anti-Malware by clicking the button below:

Run the setup file.

When setup file has finished downloading, double-click on the setup-antimalware-fix.exe file to install GridinSoft Anti-Malware on your system.

Run Setup.exe

An User Account Control asking you about to allow GridinSoft Anti-Malware to make changes to your device. So, you should click “Yes” to continue with the installation.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware Setup

Press “Install” button.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware Install

Once installed, Anti-Malware will automatically run.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware Splash-Screen

Wait for the Anti-Malware scan to complete.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware will automatically start scanning your computer for Advmj infections and other malicious programs. This process can take a 20-30 minutes, so I suggest you periodically check on the status of the scan process.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware Scanning

Click on “Clean Now”.

When the scan has completed, you will see the list of infections that GridinSoft Anti-Malware has detected. To remove them click on the “Clean Now” button in right corner.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware Scan Result

Frequently Asked Questions

🤔 How can I open “.advmj” files?Can I somehow access “.advmj” files?

Unfortunately, no. You need to decipher the “.advmj” files first. Then you will be able to open them.

🤔 What should I do to make my files accessible as fast as possible?

Hopefully, you have made a copy of those important files. If not, there is still a function of System Restore but it needs a Restore Point to be previously saved. There are other ways to beat ransomware, but they take time.

🤔 You have advised using GridinSoft Anti-Malware to get rid of the Advmj virus. Does it mean that all my files, currently encrypted, will be removed too?

Absolutely not! Your encrypted files are no threat to your PC.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware will delete actual infections from your system. The ransomware that has attacked your device is must be still active and launching checks every so often to encrypt any new files you might create on your computer after the infection. As it has been said above, the Advmj malware comes with the company. It installs backdoors and keyloggers that can take your account passwords by trespass and provide hackers with easy access to your computer in the future.

🤔 What actions should I take if the Advmj virus has blocked my computer and I can’t get the activation key.

If that happened, you need to prepare a flash memory drive with a pre-installed Trojan Killer. Use Safe Mode to perform the procedure. The point is that the ransomware runs automatically as the system boots and encrypts any new files created or brought into your PC. To suppress this function – use Safe Mode, which allows only the essential programs to run upon system boot. Consider reading our manual on booting Windows in Safe Mode.

🤔 What can I do right now?

Some of the blocked data can be located elsewhere.

  • If you sent or received your critical files through email, you could still download them from your online mailbox.
  • You might have shared images or videos with your friends or relatives. Just ask them to post those pictures back to you.
  • If you have initially downloaded any of your files from the Internet, you can try to do it again.
  • Your messengers, social media pages, and cloud disks might have all those files as well.
  • Maybe you still have the needed files on your old PC, a notebook, cellphone, flash memory, etc.

USEFUL TIP: You can use data recovery programs6 to retrieve your lost information since ransomware arrests the copies of your files, deleting the authentic ones. In the tutorial below, you can see how to recover your files with PhotoRec, but remember: you can do it only after you eradicate the ransomware itself with an antivirus program.

Also, you can contact the following governmental fraud and scam sites to report this attack:

To report the attack, you can contact local executive boards. For instance, if you live in USA, you can have a talk with FBI Local field office, IC3 or Secret Service.

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Brendan Smith
How to Remove ADVMJ Ransomware & Recover PC

Name: ADVMJ Virus

Description: ADVMJ Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .advmj extension. So, you can't use them at all.

Operating System: Windows

Application Category: Virus

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References

  1. My files are encrypted by ransomware, what should I do now?
  2. Encyclopedia of threats.
  3. You can read more on Trojans, their use and types in the Trojan-dedicated section of GridinSoft official website.
  4. GridinSoft Anti-Malware Review from HowToFix site: https://howtofix.guide/gridinsoft-anti-malware/
  5. More information about GridinSoft products: https://gridinsoft.com/products/
  6. Here’s the list of the best 10 file recovery tools of 2021.

About the author

Brendan Smith

Journalist, researcher, web content developer, grant proposal editor. Efficient and proficient on multiple platforms and in diverse media. Computer technology and security are my specialties.

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