CRYPTOLOCKER-V3 Ransomware (.ECC File Virus)

Written by Brendan Smith
The Cryptolocker-v3 virus belongs to the CryptoLocker ransomware family. This ransomware encrypts all user’s data on the PC (photos, documents, excel tables, music, videos, etc), adds its specific extension to every file, and creates the HELP_TO_DECRYPT_YOUR_FILES.txt files in every folder which contains encrypted files.
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Cryptolocker-v3 Virus

☝️ Cryptolocker-v3 can be correctly identify as a CryptoLocker ransomware-type infection.

Cryptolocker-v3 adds its specific “.ecc” extension to the name of every file. For example, your photo named as “my_photo.jpeg” will be transformed into “my_photo.jpeg.ecc“, report in Excel tables named “report.xlsx” – to “report.xlsx.ecc“, and so on.

HELP_TO_DECRYPT_YOUR_FILES.txt file, which can be found in every folder that contains the encrypted files, is a ransom money note. Inside of it, you can find information about ways of contacting Cryptolocker-v3 ransomware developers, and some other info. Inside of the ransom note, there is usually an instruction saying about purchasing the decryption tool. This decryption tool is created by ransomware developers.

Here is a summary for the Cryptolocker-v3:
Name Cryptolocker-v3 Virus
Ransomware family1 CryptoLocker ransomware
Extension .ecc
Ransomware note HELP_TO_DECRYPT_YOUR_FILES.txt
Detection2 Backdoor:Win32/Tofsee.KMG!MTB, Program:Win32/Ymacco.AA98, Heur.Ransom.REntS.Gen.1 (B)
Symptoms Your files (photos, videos, documents) have a .ecc extension and you can’t open it.
Fix Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by Cryptolocker-v3 virus

The HELP_TO_DECRYPT_YOUR_FILES.txt file by the Cryptolocker-v3 ransomware states the following frustrating information:

Your documents, photos, databases and other important files have been encrypted
with strongest encryption and unique key, generated for this computer.

 

Private decryption key is stored on a secret Internet server and nobody can
decrypt your files until you pay and obtain the private key.

 

If you see the main locker window, follow the instructions on the locker.
Overwise, it\'s seems that you or your antivirus deleted the locker program.
Now you have the last chance to decrypt your files.

 

Open hxxp://34r6hq26q2h4jkzj.tor2web.fi or hxxp://34r6hq26q2h4jkzj.onion.cab
in your browser. They are public gates to the secret server.

 

If you have problems with gates, use direct connection:
1. Download Tor Browser from hxxp://torproject.org
2. In the Tor Browser open the hxxp://34r6hq26q2h4jkzj.onion/
   Note that this server is available via Tor Browser only.
   Retry in 1 hour if site is not reachable.
Copy and paste the following Bitcoin address in the input form on server. Avoid missprints.
 14nxNAFwV8ZC3JRAxifJteBDN19WEqFMzS
Follow the instructions on the server.

The image below gives a clear vision of how the files with “.ecc” extension look like:

Cryptolocker-v3 Virus - encrypted .ecc files

Example of encrypted .ecc files

How did I get Cryptolocker-v3 ransomware on my computer?

That was a huge number of different ways of ransomware injection.

However, nowadays there are only two ways of Cryptolocker-v3 injection – email spam and trojans. You may see a lot of messages on your email, stating that you need to pay different bills or to get your parcel from the local FedEx department. But all such messages are sent from unknown email addresses, not from familiar official emails of these companies. All such letters contain the attached file, which is used as a ransomware carrier. If you open this file – your system will get infected by Cryptolocker-v3.

In case of trojans presence, you will be offered to download and install ransomware on your PC under the guise of something legit, like a Chrome update, or update for the software you are storing on your computer. Sometimes, trojan viruses can be masked as legit programs, and ransomware will be offered for download as an important update, or a big pack of extensions which are essential for proper program functioning.

There is also the third way of ransomware injection, however, it becomes less and less popular day-to-day. I am talking about peering networks, such as torrents or eMule. No one can control which files are packed in the seeding, so you can discover a huge pack of different malware after downloading. If circumstances force you to download something from peering networks – scan every downloaded folder or archive with antivirus software.

How to remove Cryptolocker-v3 virus?

In addition to encode a victim’s files, the Cryptolocker-v3 virus has also started to install the Azorult Spyware on computer to steal account credentials, cryptocurrency wallets, desktop files, and more.

To ensure the user that ransomware distributors really have the decryption tool, they may offer to decrypt several encrypted files. And they are the single owners of this decryption program: Cryptolocker-v3 ransomware is a completely new type, so there is no legit program from anti-malware vendors, which can decrypt your files. But such a situation is in momentum: decryption tools are updating every month.

However, paying the ransom is a bad decision, too. There is no guarantee that Cryptolocker-v3 ransomware developers will send you the decryption tool and a proper decryption key. And there are a lot of cases when ransomware distributors deceived their victims, sending the wrong key or even nothing. In the majority of cases, there is a way to recover your files for free. Search for available backups, and restore your system using it. Of course, there is a chance that the backup you found is too old, and does not contain a lot of files you need. But, at least you will be sure that there is no malware in your system. However, to ensure that there are no malicious programs in your system after the backup, you need to scan your PC with anti-malware software.

Cryptolocker-v3 ransomware is not unique. There are more ransomware of this type: Cryptpethya, Zoton, Zaplat. These examples of ransomware act in a similar way: encrypting your files, adding a specific extension, and leaving a great number of ransom money notes in every folder. But there are two things which make difference between these ransomware – cryptography algorithm, which is used for file encryption, and ransom amount . In some cases, victims are able to decrypt their files without any payments, just using free solutions produced by several anti-malware vendors, or even with the decryption tool which is offered by ransomware creators. The last scenario is possible when ransomware distributors have typed your decryption key inside of a ransom money note. However, as you can already guess, such luck is a very rare thing. Ransomware is created for money gaining, not for jokes or scaring.

Reasons why I would recommend GridinSoft3

The is an excellent way to deal with recognizing and removing threats – using Gridinsoft Anti-Malware. This program will scan your PC, find and neutralize all suspicious processes4.

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 Cryptolocker-v3 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 “Clean Now” button in right corner.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware Scan Result

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I open “.ecc” files?


No way. These files are encrypted by Cryptolocker-v3 ransomware. The contents of .ecc files are not available until they are decrypted.

🤔 Cryptolocker-v3 files contain important information. How can I decrypt them urgently?


If your data remained in the .ecc files are very valuable, then most likely you made a backup copy.
If not, then you can try to restore them through the system function – Restore Point. All other methods will require patience.

🤔 You have advised using GridinSoft Anti-Malware to remove Cryptolocker-v3. Does this mean that the program will delete my encrypted files?


Of course not. Your encrypted files do not pose a threat to the computer. What happened has already happened.

You need GridinSoft Anti-Malware to remove active system infections. The virus that encrypted your files is most likely still active and periodically runs a test for the ability to encrypt even more files. Also, these viruses install keyloggers and backdoors for further malicious actions (for example, theft of passwords, credit cards) often.

🤔 Cryptolocker-v3 virus has blocked infected PC: I can’t get the activation code.


In this situation, you need to prepare the memory stick with a pre-installed Trojan Killer.

🤔 What can I do right now?


You can try to find a copy of an original file that was encrypted:

  • Files you downloaded from the Internet that were encrypted and you can download again to get the original.
  • Pictures that you shared with family and friends that they can just send back to you.
  • Photos that you uploaded on social media or cloud services like Carbonite, OneDrive, iDrive, Google Drive, etc)
  • Attachments in emails you sent or received and saved.
  • Files on an older computer, flash drive, external drive, camera memory card, or iPhone where you transferred data to the infected computer.

Also, you can contact the following government 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.

How сan I avoid ransomware attack?

Cryptolocker-v3 ransomware doesn’t have a superpower.

You can easily protect yourself from its injection in several easy steps :

  • Ignore all emails from unknown mailboxes with a strange unknown address, or with content that has likely no connection to something you are waiting for (can you win in a lottery without taking part in it?). If the email subject is likely something you are waiting for, check carefully all elements of the suspicious letter. A fake email will surely contain a mistake.
  • Do not use cracked or untrusted programs. Trojans are often distributed as a part of cracked software, possibly under the guise of “patch” which prevents the license check. But untrusted programs are very hard to distinguish from trustworthy software, because trojans may also have the functionality you need. You can try to find information about this program on the anti-malware forums, but the best solution is not to use such programs.
  • And to be sure about the safety of the files you downloaded, use GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This program will surely be a perfect shield for your personal computer.

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Brendan Smith
How to Remove CRYPTOLOCKER-V3 Ransomware & Recover PC

Name: CRYPTOLOCKER-V3 Virus

Description: CRYPTOLOCKER-V3 Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .ecc 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. GridinSoft Anti-Malware Review from HowToFix site: https://howtofix.guide/gridinsoft-anti-malware/
  4. More information about GridinSoft products: https://gridinsoft.com/products/

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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