DATALOCK Virus (.DATALOCK Files) — How to Remove?

Written by Brendan Smith
The Datalock virus belongs under the MedusaLocker ransomware family. Harmful software of this type encrypts all the data on your computer (photos, documents, excel sheets, audio files, videos, etc) and adds its specific extension to every file, leaving the Recovery_Instructions.html text files in every directory with the encrypted files.
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What is Datalock virus?

☝️ A strictly correct denomination for the Datalock is “a MedusaLocker family ransomware malicious agent”.

Datalock will append its own .datalock extension to the title of every encrypted file. For example, a file named “photo.jpg” will be changed to “photo.jpg.datalock”. Likewise, the Excel sheet with the name “table.xlsx” will end up as “table.xlsx.datalock”, and so forth.

In each directory containing the encrypted files, a Recovery_Instructions.html text document will appear. It is a ransom money note. Therein you can find information on the ways of paying the ransom and some other remarks. The ransom note usually contains a description of how to purchase the decryption tool from the racketeers. That is it.

Datalock abstract:
NameDatalock Virus
Ransomware family1MedusaLocker ransomware
Extension.datalock
Ransomware noteRecovery_Instructions.html
Detection2Ransom:Win32/Cryptolocker.PAL!MTB, UDS:Trojan-Banker.Win32.Bandra, Trojan:MSIL/AgentTesla.EPQ!MTB
SymptomsYour files (photos, videos, documents) have a .datalock extension and you can’t open them.
Fix ToolSee If Your System Has Been Affected by Datalock virus

In the screenshot below, you can see what a folder with files encrypted by the Datalock looks like. Each filename has the “.datalock” extension appended to it.

Datalock Virus - encrypted .datalock files

An example of encrypted .datalock files.

How did Datalock ransomware end up on my PC?

There are plenty of possible ways of ransomware infiltration.

Nowadays, there are three most popular methods for tamperers to have the Datalock virus working in your system. These are email spam, Trojan infiltration and peer-to-peer networks.

If you access your mailbox and see letters that look like familiar notifications from utility services providers, postal agencies like FedEx, Internet providers, and whatnot, but whose “from” field is unknown to you, be wary of opening those letters. They are very likely to have a malware file attached to them. Therefore, it is even more dangerous to open any attachments that come with letters like these.

Another option for ransom hunters is a Trojan horse model3. A Trojan is an object that gets into your machine pretending to be something legal. For instance, you download an installer of some program you need or an update for some software. However, what is unboxed reveals itself a harmful program that corrupts your data. As the update wizard can have any name and any icon, you have to make sure that you can trust the source of the stuff you’re downloading. The optimal thing is to trust the software companies’ official websites.

As for the peer-to-peer networks like torrent trackers or eMule, the danger is that they are even more trust-based than the rest of the Internet. You can never guess what you download until you get it. Our suggestion is that you use trustworthy websites. Also, it is reasonable to scan the directory containing the downloaded objects with the anti-malware utility as soon as the downloading is finished.

How to remove the Datalock virus?

It is crucial to inform you that besides encrypting your data, the Datalock virus will probably deploy the Azorult Spyware on your computer to get access to credentials to various accounts (including cryptocurrency wallets). That spyware4 can extract your logins and passwords from your browser’s auto-filling cardfile.

Sometimes tamperers would decode few of your files to prove that they really have the decryption program. Since Datalock virus is a relatively recent ransomware, security software developers have not yet found a way to reverse its work. Nevertheless, the decryption tools are constantly updated, so the solution may soon be available.

Understandably, if the tamperers do the job of encoding victim’s critical files, the hopeless person will most likely fulfill their demands. However, paying to criminals gives no guarantee that you’re getting your files back. It is still risky. After obtaining the money, the racketeers may send a wrong decryption key to the injured party. There were reports about ransomware developers simply vanishing after getting the ransom without even writing back.

The optimal solution against ransomware is to have aan OS restore point or the copies of your essential files in the cloud disk or at least on an external disk. Of course, that might be insufficient. The most crucial thing could be that one you were working on when it all went down. Nevertheless, it is something. It is also wise to scan your drives with the antivirus program after the OS restoration.

Datalock is not the only ransomware of its kind, since there are other specimens of ransomware out there that act in the same manner. Examples of those are Bbnm, Zpps, Sijr, and some others. The two major differences between them and the Datalock are the ransom amount and the method of encryption. The rest is almost identical: files become encoded, their extensions altered, ransom notes are created in every folder containing encrypted files.

Some lucky victims were able to decode the arrested files with the aid of the free tools provided by anti-malware experts. Sometimes the criminals accidentally send the decryption code to the victims in the ransom readme. Such an epic fail allows the user to restore the files. But of course, one should never expect such a chance. Make no mistake, ransomware is a bandits’ technology to pull the money out of their victims.

How сan I avoid ransomware attack?

Datalock ransomware doesn’t have a superpower, neither does any similar malware.

You can armour your computer from ransomware injection taking three easy steps:

  • Never open any emails from unknown senders with strange addresses, or with content that has nothing to do with something you are waiting for (can you win in a money prize draw without participating in it?). If the email subject is more or less something you are waiting for, scrutinize all elements of the dubious email with caution. A fake email will always have a mistake.
  • Do not use cracked or unknown programs. Trojan viruses are often shared as a part of cracked products, possibly under the guise of “patch” to prevent the license check. But dubious programs are difficult to distinguish from reliable ones, because trojans may also have the functionality you seek. You can try searching for information on this program on the anti-malware message boards, but the optimal solution is not to use such programs at all.
  • And finally, to be sure about the safety of the objects you downloaded, scan them with GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This software will be a perfect defense for your personal computer.
Reasons why I would recommend GridinSoft5

There is no better way to recognize, remove and prevent ransomware than to use an anti-malware software from GridinSoft6.

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 computer.

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 system for Datalock 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

FAQ

🤔 How can I open “.datalock” files?Is it possible to open“.datalock” files?

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

🤔 The encrypted files are very important to me. How can I decrypt them quickly?

It’s good if you have fаr-sightedly saved copies of these important files elsewhere. If not, there is still a function of System Restore but it needs a Restore Point to be previously saved. All other solutions require time.

🤔 Will GridinSoft Anti-Malware remove all the encrypted files alongside the Datalock virus?

No way! The encrypted files are not harmful, so they won’t be deleted.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware will delete the infections from your computer. The virus that has attacked your system is must be still active and running scans from time to time to encrypt any new files you might create on your computer after the initial attack. As it has been said above, the Datalock ransomware comes with the company. It installs backdoors and keyloggers that can steal your account credentials and provide criminals with easy access to your system in the future.

🤔 What actions should I take if the Datalock malware has blocked my computer and I can’t get the activation code.

If that happened, you need to have a memory stick with a previously installed Trojan Killer. Use Safe Mode to do the cleaning. You see, the ransomware runs automatically as the system boots and encodes any new files created or brought into your computer. To suppress this function – use Safe Mode, which allows only the essential programs to run upon system start. Consider reading our manual on booting Windows in Safe Mode.

🤔 What can I do right now?

Some of the encrypted files can be located elsewhere.

  • If you sent or received your important files by email, you could still download them from your online mailbox.
  • You may have shared photographs or videos with your friends or relatives. Just ask them to post those images back to you.
  • If you have initially got any of your files from the Internet, you can try to do it again.
  • Your messengers, social media pages, and cloud drives might have all those files as well.
  • It might be that you still have the needed files on your old PC, a portable device, cellphone, flash memory, etc.

HINT: You can use data recovery utilities7 to get your lost data back since ransomware encodes the copies of your files, removing the authentic ones. In the tutorial below, you can see how to use PhotoRec for such a restoration, but be advised: you can do it only after you remove the ransomware itself with an anti-malware 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 DATALOCK Ransomware & Recover PC

Name: DATALOCK Virus

Description: DATALOCK Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .datalock 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. You can read more on spyware variants and nature in the respective section of GridinSoft official website.
  5. GridinSoft Anti-Malware Review from HowToFix site: https://howtofix.guide/gridinsoft-anti-malware/
  6. More information about GridinSoft products: https://gridinsoft.com/products
  7. Here’s the list of 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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