H3R Ransomware 🔐 (.H3R File) — Removal Guide

Written by Brendan Smith
The H3r virus belongs under the Dharma ransomware family. A harmful program of such sort encrypts all user’s data on the computer (images, text files, excel sheets, music, videos, etc) and appends its specific extension to every file, leaving the info.txt text files in each directory which contains the encrypted files.
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When we talk about the intrusion of unfamiliar programs into your computer’s work, the proverb “Forewarned is forearmed” describes the situation as accurately as possible. Gridinsoft Anti-Malware is exactly the tool that is always useful to have in your armory: fast, efficient, up-to-date. It is appropriate to use it as an emergency help at the slightest suspicion of infection.
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What is known about the H3rvirus?

☝️ A scientifically accurate description for the H3r would be “a Dharma family ransomware-type infection”.

The renaming will be done according to this pattern: id-xxxxx.[contact-email].h3r. In the process of encryption, a file named, for example, “report.docx” will be changed to “report.docx.id-9ECFA84E.[[email protected]].h3r”.

In each directory containing the encrypted files, a info.txt text file will be created. It is a ransom money note. It contains information about the ways of contacting the racketeers and some other information. The ransom note usually contains instructions on how to buy the decryption tool from the tamperers. You can get this tool after contacting [email protected] via email. That is how they do it.

H3r outline:
NameH3r Virus
Ransomware family1Dharma ransomware
Extension.h3r
Ransomware noteinfo.txt
Contact[email protected]
DetectionTrojan.Win32.Maxpow, Trojan:Win32/SmokeLoader.CU!MTB, Trojan:Win32/Nabucur
SymptomsYour files (photos, videos, documents) have a .h3r extension and you can’t open them.
Fix ToolSee If Your System Has Been Affected by H3r virus

The info.txt file coming in package with the H3r malware states the following:

write email [email protected] or [email protected] or [email protected] 

In the picture below, you can see what a directory with files encrypted by the H3r looks like. Each filename has the “.h3r” extension added to it.

H3r Virus - encrypted .h3r files

An example of encrypted .h3r files.

How did my machine catch H3r ransomware?

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

There are currently three most popular ways for malefactors to have ransomware planted in your digital environment. These are email spam, Trojan introduction and peer networks.

If you open your mailbox and see letters that look just like notifications from utility services companies, postal agencies like FedEx, web-access providers, and whatnot, but whose mailer is unknown to you, beware of opening those emails. They are most likely to have a harmful file enclosed in them. Therefore, it is even more dangerous to download any attachments that come with emails like these.

Another thing the hackers might try is a Trojan file scheme. A Trojan is an object that infiltrates into your machine disguised as something different. For example, you download an installer of some program you want or an update for some service. But what is unpacked turns out to be a harmful program that compromises your data. As the installation wizard can have any name 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 trust the software developers’ official websites.

As for the peer networks like torrents or eMule, the danger is that they are even more trust-based than the rest of the Web. You can never guess what you download until you get it. So you’d better be using trustworthy resources. Also, it is a good idea to scan the directory containing the downloaded objects with the anti-malware utility as soon as the downloading is done.

How do I get rid of the H3r virus?

It is important to inform you that besides encrypting your files, the H3r virus will probably install Vidar Stealer on your computer to seize your credentials to various accounts (including cryptocurrency wallets). The mentioned spyware can extract your credentials from your browser’s auto-filling data.

Sometimes criminals would decrypt several of your files to prove that they really have the decryption program. Since H3r virus is a relatively new ransomware, safety measures developers have not yet found a way to undo its work. Nevertheless, the decryption tools are frequently upgraded, so the solution may soon be available.

Sure thing, if the criminals succeed in encrypting someone’s critical files, the hopeless person will probably comply with their demands. However, paying to racketeers does not necessarily mean that you’re getting your data back. It is still risky. After obtaining the money, the racketeers may deliver a wrong decryption code to the injured party. There were reports about hackers just vanishing after getting the ransom without even bothering to reply.

The optimal countermeasure to ransomware is to have aan OS restore point or the copies of your critical files in the cloud drive or at least on an external storage. Obviously, that might be insufficient. Your most important thing could be that file you were working on when it all went down. Nevertheless, it is something. It is also advisable to scan your drives with the antivirus program after the OS restoration.

There are other ransomware products, besides H3r, that work similarly. For instance, Coty, Foza, Coza, and some others. The two main differences between them and the H3r are the ransom amount and the method of encryption. The rest is the same: documents become blocked, their extensions altered, ransom notes are found in each folder containing encoded files.

Some lucky victims were able to decode the blocked files with the help of the free software provided by anti-malware developers. Sometimes the criminals accidentally send the decoding code to the wronged in the ransom note. Such an epic fail allows the victim 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 do I avoid ransomware injection?

H3r ransomware doesn’t have a superpower, neither does any similar malware.

You can protect yourself from ransomware injection within several easy steps:

  • Never open any emails from unknown mailers with strange addresses, or with content that has nothing to do with something you are waiting for (can you win in a lottery without even taking part in it?). If the email subject is likely something you are waiting for, check all elements of the questionable letter with caution. A fake letter will always contain mistakes.
  • Do not use cracked or untrusted software. Trojans are often spreaded as a part of cracked software, possibly as a “patch” preventing the license check. But untrusted programs are very hard to tell from trustworthy software, because trojans may also have the functionality you seek. Try searching for information about this program on the anti-malware message boards, but the optimal way is not to use such software.
  • And to be sure about the safety of the files you downloaded, scan them with GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This software will be a perfect defense for your personal computer.
Reasons why I would recommend GridinSoft2

There is no better way to recognize, remove and prevent ransomware than to use an anti-malware software from GridinSoft3.

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 system for H3r 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

🤔 Are the “.h3r” files accessible?

There’s no way to do it, unless the files “.h3r” files are decrypted.

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

If the “.h3r” files contain some really important information, then you probably have them backed up. 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. The rest of the methods require patience.

🤔 You have advised using GridinSoft Anti-Malware to get rid of the H3r virus. Does it mean that all my files, currently encrypted, will be removed too?

No way! Your encrypted files are no threat to your PC.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware only deals with real threats. The virus that has infiltrated your system is probably still active and it scans your system from time to time to encode any new files you might create on your computer after the initial attack. As it has been mentioned above, the H3r malware comes with the company. It installs backdoors and keyloggers that can take your account passwords by trespass and provide criminals with easy access to your computer in the future.

🤔 What should I do if the H3r malware has blocked my computer and I can’t get the activation key.

In such an unfortunate situation, you need to prepare a flash memory card with a previously 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 process – use Safe Mode, which allows only the essential programs to run automatically. Consider reading our manual on booting Windows in Safe Mode.

🤔 What could help the situation right now?

Some of the encrypted files can be located elsewhere.

  • If you sent or received your critical files by email, you could still download them from your online mail server.
  • You may have shared images or videos with your friends or relatives. Simply 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 networks pages, and cloud disks might have all those files as well.
  • Maybe you still have the needed files on your old computer, a laptop, phone, flash memory, etc.

HINT: You can use data recovery programs4 to retrieve your lost information since ransomware blocks the copies of your files, removing the authentic ones. In the tutorial below, you can see how to recover your files with PhotoRec, 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 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 H3R Ransomware & Recover PC

Name: H3R Virus

Description: H3R Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .h3r 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. GridinSoft Anti-Malware Review from HowToFix site: https://howtofix.guide/gridinsoft-anti-malware/
  3. More information about GridinSoft products: https://gridinsoft.com/comparison
  4. Here are Top 10 Data Recovery Software Of 2023.

About the author

Brendan Smith

I'm Brendan Smith, a passionate journalist, researcher, and web content developer. With a keen interest in computer technology and security, I specialize in delivering high-quality content that educates and empowers readers in navigating the digital landscape.

With a focus on computer technology and security, I am committed to sharing my knowledge and insights to help individuals and organizations protect themselves in the digital age. My expertise in cybersecurity principles, data privacy, and best practices allows me to provide practical tips and advice that readers can implement to enhance their online security.

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