PHV1 Virus Files of Ransomware — How to remove virus?

Written by Brendan Smith
The Phv1 virus belongs to the Phobos ransomware family. A harmful program of such sort encrypts all user’s data on the computer (photos, documents, excel sheets, music, videos, etc) and adds its specific extension to every file, creating the info.txt files in every folder containing encrypted files.
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What is known about the Phv1virus?

☝️ A scientifically correct denomination for the Phv1 would be “a Phobos family ransomware-type infection”.

The scheme of renaming is this: id-*******.[email address].pHv1. After the encryption, a file named, for instance, “report.docx” will be changed to “report.docx.id130bf93.[[email protected]].pHv1”.

In every directory with the encoded files, a info.txt notebook document will appear. It is a ransom money memo. It contains information about the ways of paying the ransom and some other information. The ransom note most probably contains a description of how to purchase the decryption tool from the Phv1 developers. You can get this tool after contacting [email protected] through email. That is basically the scheme of the crime.

Phv1 outline:
Name Phv1 Virus
Ransomware family1 Phobos ransomware
Extension .id-*******.[email address].pHv1
Ransomware note info.txt
Contact [email protected]
Detection Win32/Packed.Enigma.AC, UDS:Trojan-Dropper.Win32.Scrop, Win32/RiskWare.HackTool.Agent.K
Symptoms Your files (photos, videos, documents) get a .id-*******.[email address].pHv1 extension and you can’t open them.
Fix Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by Phv1 virus

In the screenshot below, you can see what a folder with files encrypted by the Phv1 looks like. Each filename has the “.id-*******.[email address].pHv1” extension appended to it.

Phv1 Virus - encrypted .id-*******.[email address].pHv1 files

That is how encrypted “.id-*******.[email address].pHv1” files look.

How did my computer get infected with Phv1 ransomware?

There are many possible ways of ransomware injection.

Nowadays, there are three most exploited ways for hackers to have ransomware planted in your digital environment. These are email spam, Trojan injection and peer-to-peer networks.

If you access your inbox and see letters that look like familiar notifications from utility services providers, postal agencies like FedEx, web-access providers, and whatnot, but whose addresser is strange to you, be wary of opening those letters. They are very likely to have a ransomware item enclosed in them. Thus it is even riskier to open any attachments that come with letters like these.

Another option for ransom hunters is a Trojan virus scheme2. A Trojan is a program that gets into your PC pretending to be something different. Imagine, you download an installer for some program you need or an update for some software. But what is unboxed turns out to be a harmful program that encrypts your data. Since the update file 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 optimal thing is to trust the software companies’ official websites.

As for the peer-to-peer networks like torrent trackers or eMule, the threat 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 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 complete.

How to remove the Phv1 virus?

It is crucial to inform you that besides encrypting your files, the Phv1 virus will most likely deploy the Azorult Spyware on your machine to seize your credentials to different accounts (including cryptocurrency wallets). That spyware3 can derive your credentials from your browser’s auto-filling data.

Sometimes criminals would decrypt some of your files so you know that they indeed have the decryption program. As Phv1 virus is a relatively recent ransomware, safety measures engineers have not yet found a way to reverse its work. However, the decoding instruments are frequently updated, so the effective countermeasure may soon be available.

Of course, if the malefactors succeed in encoding someone’s essential files, the hopeless person will most likely fulfill their demands. However, paying to criminals 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 victim. There were reports about racketeers simply disappearing after getting the money without even bothering to reply.

The best safety measure against ransomware is to have a system restore point or the copies of your critical files in the cloud storage or at least on an external disk. Surely, that might be insufficient. The most crucial thing could be that one you were working upon when it all went down. Nevertheless, it is something. It is also advisable to scan your drives with the anti-malware utility after the system restoration.

There are other ransomware products, besides Phv1, that work similarly. For instance, Harpoonlocker, Hoffmx, Tgipus, and some others. The two major differences between them and the Phv1 are the ransom amount and the method of encryption. The rest is the same: files become inaccessible, their extensions changed, ransom notes are found in each folder containing encrypted files.

Some fortunate users were able to decode the arrested files with the aid of the free tools provided by anti-ransomware experts. Sometimes the hackers accidentally send the decoding key to the wronged in the ransom note. Such an epic fail allows the injured part to restore the files. But obviously, one should never rely on such a chance. Remember, ransomware is a bandits’ technology to pull the money out of their victims.

How сan I avert ransomware infection?

Phv1 ransomware doesn’t have a endless power, neither does any similar malware.

You can defend your computer from its attack in 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 expecting (how can you win in a lottery without even taking part in it?). In case the email subject is likely something you are expecting, check all elements of the suspicious email carefully. A hoax letter will always contain mistakes.
  • Never use cracked or unknown software. Trojans are often distributed as a part of cracked software, most likely under the guise of “patch” preventing the license check. But untrusted programs are difficult to distinguish from trustworthy ones, as trojans sometimes have the functionality you need. You can try to find information about this software product on the anti-malware forums, but the best solution is not to use such programs at all.
  • And to be sure about the safety of the objects you downloaded, scan them with GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This program will be a perfect armor for your PC.
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 PC.

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 PC for Phv1 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

🤔 Can I somehow access “.id-*******.[email address].pHv1” files?

Unfortunately, no. You need to decipher the “.id-*******.[email address].pHv1” files first. Then you will be able to open them.

🤔 I really need to decrypt those “.id-*******.[email address].pHv1” files ASAP. How can I do that?

It’s good if you have fаr-sightedly saved copies of these important files elsewhere. 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. All other solutions require time.

🤔 You have advised using GridinSoft Anti-Malware to get rid of the Phv1 virus. Does it mean that all my files, currently encrypted, will be removed too?

Absolutely not! Unlike the ransomware program itself, the encrypted files do not jeopardize your system.

With the help of GridinSoft Anti-Malware, you can clean your computer off the actual viruses. The virus that has infiltrated your computer is most likely still active and it scans your system every so often to arrest any new files you might create on your PC after the attack. As it has been said above, the Phv1 virus does not come alone. It installs backdoors and keyloggers that can take your account passwords by trespass and provide criminals with easy access to your system in the future.

🤔 What actions should I take if the Phv1 malware has blocked my PC 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 perform the procedure. You see, the ransomware starts automatically as the system boots and encodes any new files created or imported into your machine. To stop this function – use Safe Mode, which allows only the vital applications to run upon system boot. Consider reading our manual on running Windows in Safe Mode.

🤔 What could help the situation right now?

Many of the encrypted files might still be within your reach

  • If you exchanged 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 give 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 media pages, and cloud drives might have all those files too.
  • It might be that you still have the needed files on your old computer, a laptop, mobile, memory stick, etc.

USEFUL TIP: You can employ file recovery utilities6 to get your lost data back since ransomware encodes the copies of your files, deleting the original ones. In the video below, you can see how to recover your files with PhotoRec, but be advised: you won’t be able to do it before you remove the ransomware itself 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 PHV1 Ransomware & Recover PC

Name: PHV1 Virus

Description: PHV1 Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .id-*******.[email address].pHv1 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. You can read more on Trojans, their use and types in the Trojan-dedicated section of GridinSoft official website.
  3. You can read more on spyware variants and nature in the respective 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 Best 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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