LUX Ransomware (.LUX File) — Removal Guide

Written by Brendan Smith
The Lux virus belongs under the Chaos ransomware family. Harmful software of such sort encrypts all user’s data on the PC (photos, text files, excel sheets, music, videos, etc) and adds its own extension to every file, creating the read_it.txt text files in each directory which contains the encrypted files.
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What is known about the Luxvirus?

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

Lux appends its extra .lux extension to the title of every encrypted file. For example, an image entitled “photo.jpg” will be changed to “photo.jpg.lux”. In the same manner, the Excel table with the name “table.xlsx” will become “table.xlsx.lux”, and so forth.

In each folder with the encrypted files, a read_it.txt text document will be found. It is a ransom money memo. Therein you can find information about the ways of paying the ransom and some other remarks. The ransom note most probably contains a description of how to purchase the decryption tool from the racketeers. That is pretty much the scheme of the malefaction.

Lux abstract:
NameLux Virus
Ransomware family1Chaos ransomware
Extension.lux
Ransomware noteread_it.txt
Detection2Win32/Filecoder.Lorenz.E, Trojan:Win32/RATLoader.SH!MTB, Trojan:Win32/Loasum.A
SymptomsYour files (photos, videos, documents) get a .lux extension and you can’t open them.
Fix ToolSee If Your System Has Been Affected by Lux virus

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

Lux Virus - encrypted .lux files

An example of encrypted .lux files.

How did my machine catch Lux ransomware?

There are many possible ways of ransomware injection.

Nowadays, there are three most exploited ways for hackers to have ransomware acting in your digital environment. These are email spam, Trojan infiltration and 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 most likely to have a harmful item attached to them. Thus it is even more dangerous to download any attachments that come with letters like these.

Another thing the hackers might try 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 of some program you want or an update for some software. However, what is unboxed reveals itself a harmful agent that encrypts your data. Since the update package can have any name and any icon, you have to make sure that you can trust the resource of the stuff you’re downloading. The best way is to trust the software developers’ official websites.

As for the peer networks like BitTorrent or eMule, the danger 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. Our suggestion is that you use trustworthy websites. 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 to remove the Lux virus?

It is important to inform you that besides encrypting your data, the Lux virus will probably deploy the Azorult Spyware on your machine to seize your credentials to different accounts (including cryptocurrency wallets). That program can extract your credentials from your browser’s auto-filling data.

Sometimes racketeers would decrypt several of your files so you know that they do have the decryption program. As Lux virus is a relatively recent ransomware, safety measures developers have not yet found a method to undo its work. However, the decoding instruments are constantly updated, so the effective countermeasure may soon arrive.

Of course, if the criminals succeed in encrypting victim’s critical data, the desperate person will probably fulfill their demands. Nevertheless, paying a ransom gives no guarantee that you’re getting your files back. It is still risky. After getting the money, the racketeers may send a wrong decryption key to the injured party. There were reports about hackers just vanishing after getting the money without even writing back.

The optimal solution against 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 drive. Obviously, that might be not enough. The most important thing could be that one you were working on when it all started. Nevertheless, it is something. It is also advisable to scan your PC for viruses with the antivirus program after the OS is rolled back.

Lux is not the only ransomware of its kind, since there are other specimens of ransomware out there that act in the same manner. For instance, Bbyy, Bbzz, Bnrs, and some others. The two basic differences between them and the Lux are the ransom amount and the encoding method. The rest is the same: documents become encrypted, their extensions changed, ransom notes emerge in every directory containing encoded files.

Some lucky people were able to decode the arrested files with the aid of the free tools provided by anti-ransomware developers. Sometimes the criminals accidentally send the decryption code to the victims in the ransom readme. Such an epic fail allows the victim to restore the files. But obviously, one should never expect such a chance. Make no mistake, ransomware is a criminals’ tool to lay their hands on the money of their victims.

How do I avoid ransomware infection?

Lux ransomware has no endless power, so as any similar malware.

You can defend your system from ransomware attack within several easy steps:

  • Ignore any letters from unknown senders with strange addresses, or with content that has nothing to do with something you are expecting (how can you win in a money prize draw without even taking part in it?). If the email subject is more or less something you are waiting for, scrutinize all elements of the dubious letter carefully. A fake email will always have a mistake.
  • Avoid using cracked or unknown programs. Trojan viruses are often distributed as an element of cracked software, most likely under the guise of “patch” which prevents the license check. But dubious programs are difficult to tell from reliable ones, because trojans may also have the functionality you need. You can try to find information about this software product on the anti-malware message boards, but the best way is not to use such programs at all.
  • And to be sure about the safety of the files you downloaded, use GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This program will be a perfect armor for your personal computer.
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 “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 Lux 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 “.lux” files?Are the “.lux” files accessible?

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

🤔 What should I do to make my files accessible as fast as possible?

It’s good if you have fаr-sightedly saved copies of these important files elsewhere. Otherwise, you might try to employ System Restore. The only question is whether you have saved any Restore Points that would be helpful now. There are other ways to beat ransomware, but they take time.

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

Of course not. The encrypted files are not harmful, so they won’t be deleted.

With the help of GridinSoft Anti-Malware, you can clean your computer off the actual threats. The ransomware that has attacked your device is must be still functional and running scans periodically to encrypt any new files you might create on your computer after the initial attack. As it has been mentioned above, the Lux virus comes with the company. It installs backdoors and keyloggers that can take your account passwords by trespass and provide malefactors with easy access to your PC after some time.

🤔 What actions should I take if the Lux ransomware has blocked my computer and I can’t get the activation key.

In such a case, you need to prepare a flash memory drive with a pre-installed Trojan Killer. Use Safe Mode to do the cleaning. You see, the ransomware starts automatically as the system launches and encrypts any new files created or brought into your system. To stop this function – use Safe Mode, which allows only the essential programs to run upon system start. Consider reading our manual on running Windows in Safe Mode.

🤔 And what should I do now?

Some of the encrypted files can be found elsewhere.

  • If you sent or received your important files through email, you could still download them from your online mailbox.
  • You may have shared photographs or videos with your friends or family members. Simply ask them to send those images back to you.
  • If you have initially got any of your files from the Internet, you can try downloading them 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 portable device, mobile, flash memory, etc.

USEFUL TIP: You can employ file recovery utilities6 to get your lost data back since ransomware encrypts the copies of your files, removing the authentic ones. In the video below, you can learn how to use PhotoRec for such a restoration, but be advised: you can do it only after you eradicate 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 LUX Ransomware & Recover PC

Name: LUX Virus

Description: LUX Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .lux 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’s the list of the best 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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