SEX Virus πŸ” (.SEX Files) β€” How to Remove?

Written by Brendan Smith
The Sex virus belongs under the Chaos ransomware family. A harmful program of such sort encrypts all the data on your computer (photos, text files, excel tables, audio files, 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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When we talk about the intrusion of unfamiliar programs into your computer’s work, the proverb β€œForewarned 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 Sex virus?

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

Sex appends its extra .sex extension to the title of every encrypted file. For instance, a file entitled “photo.jpg” will be turned into “photo.jpg.sex”. In the same manner, the Excel sheet named “table.xlsx” will be changed to “table.xlsx.sex”, and so on.

In each folder that contains the encoded files, a read_it.txt file will be created. It is a ransom money note. It contains information on the ways of paying the ransom and some other remarks. The ransom note usually contains instructions on how to purchase the decryption tool from the racketeers. That is pretty much the scheme of the crime.

Sex summary:
NameSex Virus
Ransomware family1Chaos ransomware
Extension.sex
Ransomware noteread_it.txt
Detection2Win32/Filecoder.OIF, Win32/Injector.MV, Trojan.MSIL.Disfa.nufl
SymptomsYour files (photos, videos, documents) have a .sex extension and you can’t open them.
Fix ToolSee If Your System Has Been Affected by Sex virus

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

Sex Virus - encrypted .sex files

An example of encrypted .sex files.

How did my computer get infected with Sex ransomware?

There are plenty of possible ways of ransomware infiltration.

There are currently three most exploited methods for hackers to have ransomware working in your system. These are email spam, Trojan infiltration and peer networks.

If you open your mailbox and see letters that look like familiar notifications from utility services companies, delivery agencies like FedEx, web-access providers, and whatnot, but whose mailer is strange to you, beware of opening those letters. They are most likely to have a harmful file attached to them. Thus it is even riskier to open any attachments that come with emails like these.

Another option for ransom hunters is a Trojan horse scheme3. A Trojan is an object that gets into your machine pretending to be something else. Imagine, you download an installer of some program you want or an update for some program. But what is unboxed turns out to be a harmful agent that encodes your data. Since the installation file can have any name 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 use the software companies’ official websites.

As for the peer-to-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 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 items with the antivirus as soon as the downloading is complete.

How do I get rid of the Sex virus?

It is crucial to note that besides encrypting your files, the Sex virus will probably install the Azorult Spyware on your machine to seize your credentials to different accounts (including cryptocurrency wallets). That spyware4 can derive your logins and passwords from your browser’s auto-filling cardfile.

Often tamperers would decode several of your files so you know that they really have the decryption tool. As Sex virus is a relatively recent ransomware, safety measures engineers have not yet found a way to undo its work. Nevertheless, the anti-ransomware tools are constantly upgraded, so the effective countermeasure may soon be available.

Of course, if the hackers do the job of encrypting someone’s essential files, the desperate person will most likely comply with their demands. Nevertheless, paying to racketeers gives no guarantee that you’re getting your blocked information back. It is still risky. After receiving the ransom, the racketeers may send a wrong decryption code to the victim. There were reports of criminals just vanishing after getting the ransom without even writing back.

The best safety measure 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 storage. Of course, that might be insufficient. Your most important thing could be that one you were working upon when it all went down. But at least it is something. It is also reasonable to scan your PC for viruses with the anti-malware utility after the system restoration.

Sex 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 Oori, Ooxa, Ccza, and some others. The two major differences between them and the Sex are the ransom amount and the encoding method. The rest is the same: files become blocked, their extensions altered, ransom notes are created in every folder containing encrypted files.

Some lucky people were able to decode the arrested files with the help of the free tools provided by anti-malware developers. Sometimes the racketeers accidentally send the decoding code to the wronged in the ransom readme. Such an epic fail allows the user to restore the files. But naturally, one should never rely on such a chance. Make no mistake, ransomware is a criminals’ tool to pull the money out of their victims.

How сan I avoid ransomware attack?

Sex ransomware has no superpower, neither does any similar malware.

You can defend yourself from ransomware injection taking several easy steps:

  • Never open any letters from unknown mailers with unknown addresses, or with content that has likely no connection to something you are expecting (how 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 questionable letter carefully. A hoax letter will surely have a mistake.
  • Do not use cracked or unknown programs. Trojan viruses are often spreaded as an element of cracked products, most likely under the guise of β€œpatch” which prevents the license check. But dubious programs are very hard to tell from reliable ones, as trojans may also have the functionality you seek. You can try to find information about this program on the anti-malware message boards, but the best way is not to use such programs at all.
  • And finally, to be sure about the safety of the files you downloaded, use GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This program will be a powerful armor for your system.
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 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 β€œYes” 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 Sex 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 β€œClean Now” button in right corner.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware Scan Result

FAQ

πŸ€” How can I open “.sex” files?Can I somehow access “.sex” files?

Unfortunately, no. You need to decipher the “.sex” files first. Then you will be able to open them.

πŸ€” What should I do to make my files accessible as fast as possible?

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. The rest of the methods require patience.

πŸ€” If GridinSoft deletes the Sex malware, will it also delete my files that were encrypted?

Of course not. Unlike the ransomware program itself, the encrypted files do not jeopardize your system.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware only deals with active threats. The ransomware that has attacked your computer is must be still functional and it scans your system periodically to encode any new files you might create on your computer after the attack. As it has already been said, the Sex ransomware does not come alone. It installs backdoors and keyloggers that can steal your account credentials and provide hackers with easy access to your system after some time.

πŸ€” What to do if the Sex malware has blocked my computer and I can’t get the activation code.

In such an unfortunate situation, you need to have a flash memory drive with a pre-installed Trojan Killer. Use Safe Mode to do the cleaning. The point is that the ransomware starts automatically as the system boots and encrypts any new files created or brought into your machine. To suppress this process – use Safe Mode, which allows only the essential programs to run upon system start. Consider reading our manual on booting Windows in Safe Mode.

πŸ€” And what should I do now?

Some of the blocked data can be found 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. Simply ask them to give those images back to you.
  • If you have initially downloaded any of your files from the Internet, you can try downloading them again.
  • Your messengers, social media pages, and cloud storage might have all those files too.
  • 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 programs7 to retrieve your lost information since ransomware blocks the copies of your files, removing the original ones. In the video below, you can see how to recover your files with PhotoRec, but remember: you can do it only after you eradicate 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 SEX Ransomware & Recover PC

Name: SEX Virus

Description: SEX Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .sex 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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