BITCOINPAYMENT Virus πŸ” (.BITCOINPAYMENT Files) β€” How to Remove?

Written by Brendan Smith
The Bitcoinpayment virus belongs to the Phobos ransomware family. Ransomware of this type encrypts all the data on your PC (images, text files, excel sheets, audio files, videos, etc) and appends its own extension to every file, leaving the info.txt files in each directory with the encrypted files.
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Bitcoinpayment virus: what is known so far?

☝️ A scientifically correct designation for the Bitcoinpayment is “a Phobos family ransomware-type malicious agent”.

The scheme of renaming is the following: id[xxxxxxx].[contact_email].BITCOINPAYMENT. In the course of encryption, a file entitled, for instance, “report.docx” will be renamed to “report.docx.id[9ECFA84E-1095].[cleverhorse@protonmail.com].BITCOINPAYMENT”.

In each directory that contains the encrypted files, a info.txt text file will be created. It is a ransom money note. It contains information about the ways of paying the ransom and some other remarks. The ransom note most probably contains instructions on how to purchase the decryption tool from the tamperers. You can get this decrypting software after contacting cleverhorse@protonmail.com via email. That is how they do it.

Bitcoinpayment summary:
NameBitcoinpayment Virus
Ransomware family1Phobos ransomware
Extension.BITCOINPAYMENT
Ransomware noteinfo.txt
Contactcleverhorse@protonmail.com
Detection2Multi:Filecoder-H [Trj], Backdoor:Win32/Dridex.AA!MSR, Trojan.MalPack.FFS
SymptomsYour files (photos, videos, documents) have a .BITCOINPAYMENT extension and you can’t open them.
Fix ToolSee If Your System Has Been Affected by Bitcoinpayment virus

The info.txt document coming in package with the Bitcoinpayment malware states the following:

Want return your files?Write to our xmpp account - cleverhorse@xmpp.jp
The easiest way - register here hxxps://www.xmpp.jp/signup
After download pidgin client hxxps://pidgin.im/
Press Add account,choose protocol xmpp and put username from xmpp.jp where are you sign up
Domain - xmpp.jp
Put your password and press add
When you log in press Buddies --> Add Buddy-->and in Buddys username put cleverhorse xmpp.jp
After you will see added account cleverhorse@xmpp.jp,click twice on it and write your message
You can send us 1-3 test files. The total size of files must be less than 10Mb (non archived),
we will decrypt them and send to you that we are real
If you have a problem with xmpp you can write to our mail cleverhorse@protonmail.com 

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

Bitcoinpayment Virus - encrypted .BITCOINPAYMENT files

An example of encrypted .BITCOINPAYMENT files.

How did my computer get infected with Bitcoinpayment ransomware?

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

There are currently three most exploited ways for evil-doers to have ransomware planted in your digital environment. These are email spam, Trojan injection and peer-to-peer networks.

If you access your inbox and see emails that look like familiar notifications from utility services companies, delivery agencies like FedEx, Internet providers, and whatnot, but whose sender is unknown to you, beware of opening those emails. They are most likely to have a malicious 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 scheme3. A Trojan is a program that infiltrates into your PC disguised as something else. For instance, you download an installer for some program you want or an update for some software. But what is unboxed turns out to be a harmful program that encodes your data. As the update file can have any title and any icon, you’d better be sure that you can trust the resource of the files you’re downloading. The best thing is to use the software companies’ official websites.

As for the peer-to-peer file transfer protocols like torrent trackers or eMule, the threat is that they are even more trust-based than the rest of the Web. You can never know what you download until you get it. So you’d better be using trustworthy websites. Also, it is a good idea to scan the directory containing the downloaded files with the anti-malware utility as soon as the downloading is done.

How do I get rid of the Bitcoinpayment virus?

It is crucial to inform you that besides encrypting your files, the Bitcoinpayment virus will probably install the Azorult Spyware on your computer to get access to credentials to different accounts (including cryptocurrency wallets). That program can derive your logins and passwords from your browser’s auto-filling data.

Often criminals would decode some of your files so you know that they indeed have the decryption program. Since Bitcoinpayment virus is a relatively new ransomware, safety measures developers have not yet found a method to reverse its work. Nevertheless, the decoding instruments are frequently updated, so the effective countermeasure may soon be available.

Understandably, if the hackers do the job of encrypting victim’s critical data, the hopeless person will probably comply with their demands. However, paying to racketeers gives no guarantee that you’re getting your blocked information back. It is still risky. After receiving the money, the racketeers may send a wrong decryption code to the injured party. There were reports of malefactors simply disappearing after getting the ransom without even bothering to reply.

The best safety measure against ransomware is to have a system restore point or the copies of your essential files in the cloud disk or at least on an external drive. Of course, that might be insufficient. Your most crucial thing could be that file you were working upon when it all happened. But at least it is something. It is also wise to scan your drives with the antivirus program after the OS restoration.

There are other ransomware products, besides Bitcoinpayment, that work similarly. For instance, Vvwq, Oori, Ooxa, and some others. The two basic differences between them and the Bitcoinpayment are the ransom amount and the method of encryption. The rest is the same: documents become blocked, their extensions altered, ransom notes emerge in each directory containing encoded files.

Some fortunate victims were able to decrypt the blocked files with the aid of the free tools provided by anti-ransomware specialists. Sometimes the criminals mistakenly send the decryption code to the victims in the ransom readme. Such an extraordinary fail allows the user to restore the files. But naturally, one should never rely on such a chance. Remember, ransomware is a criminals’ instrument to lay their hands on the money of their victims.

How сan I avoid ransomware attack?

Bitcoinpayment ransomware has no endless power, neither does any similar malware.

You can defend yourself from ransomware injection in three easy steps:

  • Ignore any emails from unknown mailers with strange addresses, or with content that has nothing to do with something you are expecting (can you win in a lottery without participating in it?). In case the email subject is more or less something you are expecting, scrutinize all elements of the suspicious email with caution. A hoax email will always contain mistakes.
  • Avoid using cracked or unknown software. Trojan viruses are often shared as a part of cracked software, possibly as a β€œpatch” which prevents the license check. But potentially dangerous programs are difficult to distinguish from reliable software, because trojans may also have the functionality you need. Try searching for information about this program on the anti-malware message boards, but the best way is not to use such software.
  • And finally, to be sure about the safety of the objects you downloaded, use GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This software will be a powerful armor for your system.
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 β€œYes” 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 Bitcoinpayment 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 finished, you will see the list of infections that GridinSoft Anti-Malware has detected. To remove them click on the β€œClean Now” button in right corner.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware Scan Result

Frequently Asked Questions

πŸ€” Can I somehow access “.BITCOINPAYMENT” files?

Negative. That is why ransomware is so frustrating. Until you decode the “.BITCOINPAYMENT” files you will not be able to access them.

πŸ€” I really need to decrypt those β€œ.BITCOINPAYMENT” files ASAP. How can I do that?

Hopefully, you have made a copy of those important files. In case you haven’t, there is still a chance that you do have a Restore Point from some time ago to roll back the whole system to the moment when it had no virus yet, but already had your files. There are other ways to beat ransomware, but they take time.

πŸ€” If GridinSoft deletes the Bitcoinpayment malware, will it also delete my files that were encrypted?

Of course not. Unlike the ransomware program itself, the encrypted files do not jeopardize your system.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware will delete the infections from your computer. The ransomware that has attacked your device is most likely still functional and it scans your system every so often to encrypt any new files you might create on your computer after the initial attack. As it has been mentioned above, the Bitcoinpayment virus does not come alone. It installs backdoors and keyloggers that can take your account passwords by trespass and provide malefactors with easy access to your PC in the future.

πŸ€” What actions should I take if the Bitcoinpayment ransomware has blocked my computer and I can’t get the activation code.

In such a case, you need to have a flash memory card with a previously installed Trojan Killer. Use Safe Mode to perform the cleaning. The point is that the ransomware runs automatically as the system launches and encrypts any new files created or brought into your machine. To block this process – use Safe Mode, which allows only the vital programs to run upon system start. Consider reading our manual on booting Windows in Safe Mode.

πŸ€” And what should I do now?

Some of the encrypted data can be located elsewhere.

  • If you exchanged your important files by email, you could still download them from your online mailbox.
  • You might have shared photographs or videos with your friends or family members. Simply ask them to send those pictures back to you.
  • If you have initially got any of your files from the Internet, you can try doing it again.
  • Your messengers, social media pages, and cloud storage might have all those files as well.
  • Maybe you still have the needed files on your old PC, a laptop, phone, memory stick, etc.

USEFUL TIP: You can employ file recovery programs6 to get your lost data back since ransomware encrypts the copies of your files, deleting the authentic ones. In the video below, you can see how to use PhotoRec for such a restoration, but be advised: you won’t be able to do it before you kill the virus with an antivirus program.

Also, you can contact the following official 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 BITCOINPAYMENT Ransomware & Recover PC

Name: BITCOINPAYMENT Virus

Description: BITCOINPAYMENT Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .BITCOINPAYMENT 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 are the top 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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