The Factfull virus falls under the Makop ransomware family. Harmful software of such sort encrypts all user’s data on the computer (images, documents, excel sheets, music, videos, etc) and adds its extra extension to every file, leaving the readme-warning.txt files in each folder which contains the encrypted files.
It is better to prevent, than repair and repent!
Subscribe to our Telegram channel to be the first to know about news and our exclusive materials on information security.
Factfull virus: what is known so far?
☝️ A strictly accurate denomination for the Factfull would be “a Makop family ransomware infection”.
The scheme of renaming is this: [victim\’s_ID].[email_address].factfull. In the course of encryption, a file named, for instance, “report.docx” will be renamed to “report.docx.[87C29B86].[firstname.lastname@example.org].factfull”.
In each folder containing the encrypted files, a readme-warning.txt text document will appear. It is a ransom money memo. Therein you can find information about the ways of contacting the racketeers and some other remarks. The ransom note usually contains instructions on how to purchase the decryption tool from the racketeers. That is how they do it.
|Ransomware family1||Makop ransomware|
|Detection2||MSIL/TrojanDownloader.Agent.JTN, Trojan:MSIL/AgentTesla.LSL!MTB, Win32/Injector.CXIK|
|Symptoms||Your files (photos, videos, documents) have a .[victim\’s_ID].[email_address].factfull extension and you can’t open them.|
|Fix Tool||See If Your System Has Been Affected by Factfull virus|
In the picture below, you can see what a directory with files encrypted by the Factfull looks like. Each filename has the “.[victim\’s_ID].[email_address].factfull” extension appended to it.
How did Factfull ransomware end up on my PC?
There are many possible ways of ransomware infiltration.
Nowadays, there are three most exploited methods for evil-doers to have ransomware working in your digital environment. These are email spam, Trojan injection and peer-to-peer networks.
If you access your mailbox and see letters that look just like notifications from utility services companies, delivery agencies like FedEx, web-access providers, and whatnot, but whose sender is strange to you, be wary of opening those emails. They are very likely to have a harmful file enclosed in them. Therefore, it is even riskier to download any attachments that come with letters like these.
Another thing the hackers might try is a Trojan horse scheme3. A Trojan is an object that gets into your PC disguised as something else. For instance, you download an installer of some program you need or an update for some program. However, what is unboxed reveals itself a harmful agent that compromises your data. As the update package can have any title and any icon, you’d better be sure that you can trust the resource of the things you’re downloading. The optimal thing is to trust the software developers’ 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 Internet. You can never know what you download until you get it. Our suggestion is that you use trustworthy resources. Also, it is reasonable to scan the folder containing the downloaded files with the anti-malware utility as soon as the downloading is finished.
How to remove the Factfull virus?
It is important to note that besides encrypting your data, the Factfull virus will probably install the Azorult Spyware on your PC to get access to credentials to different accounts (including cryptocurrency wallets). The mentioned spyware4 can derive your logins and passwords from your browser’s auto-filling data.
Sometimes criminals would decode several of your files to prove that they indeed have the decryption tool. Since Factfull virus is a relatively recent ransomware, safety measures developers have not yet found a way to undo its work. However, the decoding instruments are frequently updated, so the solution may soon be available.
Sure thing, if the criminals do the job of encoding victim’s critical files, the hopeless person will probably comply with their demands. Despite that, paying to racketeers does not necessarily mean that you’re getting your data back. It is still risky. After receiving the ransom, the racketeers may deliver a wrong decryption key to the injured party. There were reports of racketeers simply vanishing after getting the money without even bothering to reply.
The best solution against ransomware is to have a system restore point or the copies of your critical files in the cloud disk or at least on an external drive. Obviously, that might be insufficient. Your most crucial thing could be that one you were working on when it all went down. But at least it is something. It is also wise to scan your PC for viruses with the antivirus program after the system is rolled back.
There are other ransomware products, besides Factfull, that work similarly. Examples of those are Vfgj, Zaqi, Loov, and some others. The two major differences between them and the Factfull are the ransom amount and the method of encryption. The rest is almost identical: files become blocked, their extensions changed, ransom notes appear in each folder containing encoded files.
Some lucky users were able to decrypt the blocked files with the aid of the free tools provided by anti-ransomware experts. Sometimes the hackers mistakenly send the decoding code to the wronged in the ransom note. Such an extraordinary fail allows the injured part to restore the files. But of course, one should never expect such a chance. Remember, ransomware is a bandits’ technology to pull the money out of their victims.
How to avert ransomware injection?
Factfull ransomware doesn’t have a endless power, so as any similar malware.
You can armour your computer from its infiltration taking several easy steps:
- Never open any letters from unknown mailboxes with strange addresses, or with content that has nothing to do with something you are expecting (how can you win in a lottery without participating in it?). In case the email subject is likely something you are waiting for, scrutinize all elements of the suspicious email carefully. A hoax email will always contain a mistake.
- Avoid using cracked or unknown programs. Trojans are often distributed as an element of cracked software, possibly under the guise of “patch” preventing the license check. But dubious programs are very hard to tell from reliable ones, because trojans may also have the functionality you seek. You can try to find information on this software product on the anti-malware forums, but the best way is not to use such software.
- And finally, to be sure about the safety of the objects you downloaded, scan them with GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This software will be a powerful armor 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 PC.
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.
Press “Install” button.
Once installed, Anti-Malware will automatically run.
Wait for the Anti-Malware scan to complete.
GridinSoft Anti-Malware will automatically start scanning your PC for Factfull 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.
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.
Frequently Asked Questions
🤔 Can I somehow access “.[victim\’s_ID].[email_address].factfull” files?
Unfortunately, no. You need to decipher the “.[victim\’s_ID].[email_address].factfull” files first. Then you will be able to open them.
🤔 The encrypted files are very important to me. How can I decrypt them quickly?
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.
🤔 Will GridinSoft Anti-Malware remove all the encrypted files alongside the Factfull virus?
No way! The encrypted files are not harmful, so they won’t be deleted.
With the help of GridinSoft Anti-Malware, you can clean your PC off the actual threats. The virus that has infected your device is must be still active and it scans your system from time to time to encode any new files you might create on your computer after the attack. As it has been mentioned above, the Factfull ransomware does not come alone. It installs backdoors and keyloggers that can steal your account credentials and provide hackers with easy access to your computer after some time.
🤔 What actions should I take if the Factfull malware has blocked my computer and I can’t get the activation code.
In such an unfortunate situation, you need to prepare a flash memory card with a pre-installed Trojan Killer. Use Safe Mode to execute the procedure. The point is that the ransomware starts automatically as the system boots and encodes any new files created or imported into your computer. To stop 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 encrypted files can be located elsewhere.
- If you exchanged your critical files via email, you could still download them from your online mailbox.
- You may 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 doing it again.
- Your messengers, social networks pages, and cloud storage might have all those files too.
- It might be that you still have the needed files on your old computer, a laptop, cellphone, flash memory, etc.
USEFUL TIP: You can employ data recovery programs7 to get your lost data back since ransomware encodes the copies of your files, deleting the authentic ones. In the video below, you can learn how to recover your files with PhotoRec, but remember: you can do it only after you remove the virus with an anti-malware program.
Also, you can contact the following official fraud and scam sites to report this attack:
- In the United States: On Guard Online;
- In Canada: Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre;
- In the United Kingdom: Action Fraud;
- In Australia: SCAMwatch;
- In New Zealand: Consumer Affairs Scams;
- In France: Agence nationale de la sécurité des systèmes d’information;
- In Germany: Bundesamt für Sicherheit in der Informationstechnik;
- In Ireland: An Garda Síochána;
I need your help to share this article.
It is your turn to help other people. I have written this article to help people like you. You can use the buttons below to share this on your favorite social media Facebook, Twitter, or Reddit.Brendan Smith
How to Remove FACTFULL Ransomware & Recover PC
Name: FACTFULL Virus
Description: FACTFULL Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .[victim's_ID].[email_address].factfull extension. So, you can't use them at all.
Operating System: Windows
Application Category: Virus
User Review( votes)
- My files are encrypted by ransomware, what should I do now?
- Encyclopedia of threats.
- You can read more on Trojans, their use and types in the Trojan-dedicated section of GridinSoft official website.
- You can read more on spyware variants and nature in the respective section of GridinSoft official website.
- GridinSoft Anti-Malware Review from HowToFix site: https://howtofix.guide/gridinsoft-anti-malware/
- More information about GridinSoft products: https://gridinsoft.com/products/
- Here’s the list of the top 10 file recovery tools of 2021.