SMILE DOG Virus 🔐 (.SMILE Files) — How to Remove?

Smile Dog Ransomware
Smile Dog Ransomware
Written by Brendan Smith
The Smile dog virus falls within the ransomware type of malicious agent. Harmful software of such sort encrypts all user’s data on the computer (photos, text files, excel tables, music, videos, etc) and adds its extra extension to every file, leaving the SMILEJPG.txt text files in every directory with 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 Smile dog virus?

☝️ A strictly accurate denomination for the Smile dog would be “a ransomware malicious agent”.

Smile dog will append its own .sMilE extension to every file’s name. For instance, an image entitled “photo.jpg” will be altered to “photo.jpg.sMilE”. Just like the Excel sheet named “table.xlsx” will be changed to “table.xlsx.sMilE”, and so forth.

In each folder containing the encoded files, a SMILEJPG.txt file will appear. It is a ransom money note. Therein you can find information on the ways of contacting the racketeers and some other remarks. The ransom note usually contains a description of how to purchase the decryption tool from the ransomware developers. You can get this decrypting software after contacting smiledogisthebestmate@gmail.com via email. That is how they do it.

Smile dog abstract:
NameSmile dog Virus
Extension.sMilE
Ransomware noteSMILEJPG.txt
Contactsmiledogisthebestmate@gmail.com
DetectionTrojan:Win32/Bomitag.D!rfn, Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Rector.im, BAT/KillBackup.C
SymptomsYour files (photos, videos, documents) get a .sMilE extension and you can’t open them.
Fix ToolSee If Your System Has Been Affected by Smile dog virus

The SMILEJPG.txt document coming in package with the Smile dog ransomware states the following:

ALL YOUR FILES HAVE BEEN ENCRYPTED BY THE SMILE DOG RANSOMWARE CONTACT SMILEDOGISTHEBESTMATE@gmail.com

In the picture below, you can see what a folder with files encrypted by the Smile dog looks like. Each filename has the “.sMilE” extension appended to it.

Smile dog Virus - encrypted .sMilE files

That is how encrypted “.sMilE” files look.

How did my machine catch Smile dog ransomware?

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

There are currently three most popular ways for criminals to have the Smile dog virus working in your digital environment. These are email spam, Trojan introduction and peer-to-peer file transfer.

If you access 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 addresser is strange to you, beware of opening those letters. They are most likely to have a ransomware file attached to them. Thus it is even more dangerous to download any attachments that come with emails like these.

Another option for ransom hunters is a Trojan virus model. A Trojan is an object that gets into your machine disguised as something different. Imagine, you download an installer for some program you want or an update for some software. But what is unboxed reveals itself a harmful agent that corrupts your data. As the installation wizard can have any name and any icon, you’d better be sure that you can trust the source of the stuff you’re downloading. The best thing is to use the software companies’ official websites.

As for the 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 directory containing the downloaded files with the anti-malware utility as soon as the downloading is finished.

How to remove the Smile dog virus?

It is crucial to note that besides encrypting your data, the Smile dog virus will probably install Vidar Stealer on your PC to seize your credentials to different accounts (including cryptocurrency wallets). That spyware can extract your credentials from your browser’s auto-filling cardfile.

Sometimes criminals would decrypt some of your files so you know that they do have the decryption program. As Smile dog virus is a relatively recent ransomware, security software designers have not yet found a method to undo its work. Nevertheless, the decoding tools are frequently updated, so the solution may soon be available.

Understandably, if the tamperers succeed in encoding someone’s essential files, the hopeless person will most likely fulfill their demands. However, paying to racketeers gives no guarantee that you’re getting your files back. It is still risky. After receiving the money, the racketeers may send a wrong decryption key to the victim. There were reports of malefactors just disappearing after getting the ransom without even writing back.

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 drive. Surely, that might be insufficient. The most crucial thing could be that file you were working on when it all went down. Nevertheless, it is something. It is also wise to scan your PC for viruses with the anti-malware utility after the system is rolled back.

There are other ransomware products, besides Smile dog, that work similarly. For instance, Coty, Foza, Coza, and some others. The two main differences between them and the Smile dog are the ransom amount and the method of encryption. The rest is almost identical: documents become inaccessible, their extensions altered, ransom notes are found in every directory containing encoded files.

Some lucky victims were able to decode the arrested files with the help of the free software provided by anti-ransomware specialists. Sometimes the hackers mistakenly send the decoding key to the victims in the ransom note. Such an epic fail allows the user to restore the files. But of course, one should never expect such a chance. Remember, ransomware is a criminals’ tool to pull the money out of their victims.

How сan I avoid ransomware attack?

Smile dog ransomware has no superpower, so as any similar malware.

You can defend your computer from ransomware infiltration in three easy steps:

  • Ignore any letters from unknown mailers with strange addresses, or with content that has likely no connection to something you are waiting for (how can you win in a money prize draw without participating in it?). In case the email subject is more or less something you are waiting for, check all elements of the dubious email with caution. A hoax email will surely have a mistake.
  • Avoid using cracked or unknown programs. Trojans are often spreaded as an element of cracked products, most likely under the guise of “patch” to prevent the license check. But potentially dangerous programs are difficult to tell from reliable software, because trojans sometimes have the functionality you need. You can try to find information about this software product on the anti-malware message boards, but the optimal solution is not to use such programs at all.
  • And finally, to be sure about the safety of the objects you downloaded, check them with GridinSoft Anti-Malware. This program will be a powerful armor for your system.
Reasons why I would recommend GridinSoft1

There is no better way to recognize, remove and prevent ransomware than to use an anti-malware software from GridinSoft2.

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 Smile dog 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

🤔 How can I open “.sMilE” files?Is it possible to open“.sMilE” files?

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

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

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 Smile dog 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.

GridinSoft Anti-Malware only deals with actual viruses. The ransomware that has infected your computer is most likely still active and launching checks every so often to arrest any new files you might create on your computer after the attack. As it has already been said, the Smile dog virus does not come alone. It installs backdoors and keyloggers that can steal your account credentials and provide hackers with easy access to your system in the future.

🤔 What to do if the Smile dog ransomware has blocked my computer and I can’t get the activation code.

In such a case, you need to prepare a flash memory card with a previously installed Trojan Killer. Use Safe Mode to do the cleaning. The point is that the ransomware runs automatically as the system boots and encrypts any new files created or brought into your machine. To suppress this function – use Safe Mode, which allows only the essential applications to run upon system start. Consider reading our manual on running Windows in Safe Mode.

🤔 What can I do right now?

Many of the encrypted files might still be at your disposal

  • 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 relatives. Simply ask them to send those pictures back to you.
  • If you have initially got any of your files from the Web, you can try doing it again.
  • Your messengers, social media pages, and cloud disks might have all those files as well.
  • It might be that you still have the needed files on your old computer, a notebook, cellphone, memory stick, etc.

USEFUL TIP: You can use data recovery programs3 to retrieve your lost information since ransomware encodes the copies of your files, removing the authentic ones. In the video below, you can learn how to use PhotoRec for such a recovery, but remember: you can do it only after you eradicate 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 SMILE DOG Ransomware & Recover PC

Name: SMILE DOG Virus

Description: SMILE DOG Virus is a ransomware-type infections. This virus encrypts important personal files (video, photos, documents). The encrypted files can be tracked by a specific .sMilE extension. So, you can't use them at all.

Operating System: Windows

Application Category: Virus

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References

  1. GridinSoft Anti-Malware Review from HowToFix site: https://howtofix.guide/gridinsoft-anti-malware/
  2. More information about GridinSoft products: https://gridinsoft.com/products
  3. 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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