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KoRyA ransomware


KoRyA virus Removal Guide

What is KoRyA ransomware?

KoRyA ransomware demands victims pay 0.06 BTC in return for the decryption of their files

KoRyA ransomwareKoRyA virus turns the thumbnails of encrypted files into locks

KoRyA is a particularly nasty strain of ransomware recently brought to the attention of cyber security experts. This type of Xorist ransomware family malware encrypts data on affected computers and then asks for a ransom payment in exchange for decryption keys.[1] In KoRyA’s case, its typical demand amounts up to 0.06 BTC or around $17,000 at current market value.

While searching through the samples submitted to VirusTotal,[2] malware researchers uncovered KoRyA; an encryption virus not only encodes data but also adds a “.KoRyA” extension to filenames, alters desktop wallpaper, and generates a text document named “HOW TO DECRYPT FILES.txt.” It also displays an error message containing instructions for settling the ransom.

NAMEKoRyA
TYPERansomware, data locking virus, crypto virus
MALWARE FAMILYXorist ransomware
FILE EXTENSION.KoRyA
RANSOM NOTEError message, desktop wallpaper, HOW TO DECRYPT FILES.txt
RANSOM AMOUNT0.06 BTC
DISTRIBUTIONInfected email attachments, peer-to-peer file-sharing platforms, torrents, malicious ads
FILE RECOVERYIt is almost impossible to recover the files if you do not have backups or the decryption keys were not leaked; in some cases, recovery is successful with third-party software
ELIMINATIONScan your machine with anti-malware software to eliminate the virus safely; this will not recover the locked files
SYSTEM FIXYou can avoid Windows reinstallation with ReimageIntego maintenance tool, which can fix damaged files and system errors

The ransom note

The text file HOW TO DECRYPT FILES.txt that KoRyA ransomware generates reads as follows:

ATTENTION!

All your files have been encrypted
And their decryption will cost you 0.06 bitcoin.

To start the decryption process follow the steps below

Step 1) Make sure you send 0.06 bitcoin to this wallet:
bc1q73lm30rgv6h9wy42y88t0r8prjh9l9pzpvvm9c

Step 2) Contact me at this email address: [email protected]
With this Subject: –

After the payment has been confirmed,
you will receive the decryptor and the keys for decryption!

Other information:

If you don’t own bitcoin, you can buy it here very easily
www.coinmama.com
www.bitpanda.com
www.localbitcoins.com
www.paxful.com

You can find a larger list here:
hxxps://bitcoin.org/en/exchanges

If the payment is not made in 2 days, I will consider that you do not want to decrypt your files,
and therefore the keys generated for your PC will be permanently.deleted.

The ransom note instructs victims to send the required amount of Bitcoin to the provided wallet and then email [email protected] to receive the decryption tools. It also specifies that victims have only two days to pay the ransom of 0.06 Bitcoins before the decryption keys will be deleted. This means that, unless the victim has a data backup or access to a third-party decryption tool, they are effectively forced to pay the ransom in order to regain access to their encrypted data.

While paying the ransom demand from malicious attackers may seem like an easy solution, it is highly discouraged. This is primarily due to the fact that these online criminals cannot guarantee successful decryption after payment has been made – often leaving victims with no other option but helplessness when they fail to follow through on their word.

KoRyA ransom note

0.06 of Bitcoin is a high price that victims should not consider paying

Distribution methods

The most common ways that ransomware is spread are through websites that host illegally obtained or cracked software,[3] emails that contain harmful links or attachments, Trojan horses, phony software updaters, peer-to-peer networks, third-party downloaders, and free file hosting websites.

Cybercriminals frequently con unwary users into downloading malicious software or opening harmful email attachments by misleading them into thinking they are downloading genuine software or opening a safe email attachment. It’s critical to adhere to cybersecurity best practices if you want to safeguard yourself from ransomware infections like KoRyA.

This entails only obtaining software from reputable retailers and official sources, avoiding downloads from dodgy websites and third-party downloaders, and exercising caution when opening files or clicking links in emails from shady or ambiguous senders. Additionally, you should regularly scan your computer for dangers and maintain all software, including your operating system, up to date.

Disconnect your device from the local network

One of the most concerning aspects of ransomware like KoRyA, is the fact that it can spread quickly within a local network. While active, the malware can encrypt additional files and infect other computers that are connected to the same network. This means that, if just one device within a local network is infected with KoRyA, it could potentially spread to other devices and cause widespread damage.

Eliminate ransomware

The critical thing to do is disconnect the affected machine from the local network. For home users, disconnecting the ethernet cable should do the job. If this happened at your workplace, doing that might be complicated, so we have instructions for corporate environments at the bottom of this post.

If you try to recover your data first, it can result in permanent loss. It can also encrypt your files the second time. It will not stop until you remove the malicious files causing it first. You should not attempt removing the malicious program yourself unless you have experience.

Use anti-malware tools like SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes to scan your system. This security software should find all the related files and entries and remove them automatically for you. In some cases, malware is not letting you use antivirus in normal mode, so you need to access Safe Mode and perform a full system scan from there:

Windows 7 / Vista / XP

  1. Click Start > Shutdown > Restart > OK.
  2. When your computer becomes active, start pressing the F8 button (if that does not work, try F2, F12, Del, etc. – it all depends on your motherboard model) multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
  3. Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.

Windows 10 / Windows 8

  1. Right-click on the Start button and select Settings.
  2. Scroll down to pick Update & Security.
  3. On the left side of the window, pick Recovery.
  4. Now scroll down to find the Advanced Startup section.
  5. Click Restart now.
  6. Select Troubleshoot.
  7. Go to Advanced options.
  8. Select Startup Settings.
  9. Click Restart.
  10. Press 5 or click 5) Enable Safe Mode with Networking.

Fix Windows system issues

Performance, stability, and usability issues, to the point where a complete Windows reinstall is required, are expected after a malware infection. These types of infections can alter the Windows registry database, damage vital bootup, and other sections, delete or corrupt DLL files, etc. Once a system file is damaged by malware, antivirus software is not able to repair it.

This is why ReimageIntego was developed. It can fix a lot of the damage caused by an infection like this. Blue Screen errors,[4] freezes, registry errors, damaged DLLs, etc., can make your computer completely unusable. By using this maintenance tool, you could avoid Windows reinstallation.

  • Download the application by clicking on the link above
  • Click on the ReimageRepair.exe
  • If User Account Control (UAC) shows up, select Yes
  • Press Install and wait till the program finishes the installation process
  • The analysis of your machine will begin immediately
  • Once complete, check the results – they will be listed in the Summary
  • You can now click on each of the issues and fix them manually
  • If you see many problems that you find difficult to fix, we recommend you purchase the license and fix them automatically.Reimage results

File recovery options

Many people think that they can fix their files with anti-malware tools, but that is not what they are designed for. All the security tools can do is detect suspicious processes in your system and eliminate malicious files. The truth is, the files can be restored only with a decryption key or software that only cybercriminals have.

If you did not back up your data previously, you possibly lost your files forever. You can try using data recovery software, but third-party programs cannot always decrypt the files. We suggest at least trying this method. Before proceeding, you have to copy the corrupted files and place them in a USB flash drive or another storage. And remember – only do this if you have already removed the KoRyA ransomware.

Before you begin, several pointers are essential while dealing with this situation:

  • Since the encrypted data on your computer might permanently be damaged by security or data recovery software, you should first make backups of it – use a USB flash drive or another storage.
  • Only attempt to recover your files using this method after you perform a scan with anti-malware software.

Install data recovery software

  1. Download Data Recovery Pro.
  2. Double-click the installer to launch it.
  3. Follow on-screen instructions to install the software.Install program
  4. As soon as you press Finish, you can use the app.
  5. Select Everything or pick individual folders where you want the files to be recovered from.Select what to recover
  6. Press Next.
  7. At the bottom, enable Deep scan and pick which Disks you want to be scanned.Select Deep scan
  8. Press Scan and wait till it is complete.
  9. You can now pick which folders/files to recover – don’t forget you also have the option to search by the file name!
  10. Press Recover to retrieve your files.Recover files
Reimage Intego has a free limited scanner. Reimage Intego offers more through scan when you purchase its full version. When free scanner detects issues, you can fix them using free manual repairs or you can decide to purchase the full version in order to fix them automatically.

Alternative Software

Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Reimage, try running SpyHunter 5.
Malwarebytes

Alternative Software

Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

Getting rid of KoRyA virus. Follow these steps

Isolate the infected computer

Some ransomware strains aim to infect not only one computer but hijack the entire network. As soon as one of the machines is infected, malware can spread via network and encrypt files everywhere else, including Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices. If your computer is connected to a network, it is important to isolate it to prevent re-infection after ransomware removal is complete.

The easiest way to disconnect a PC from everything is simply to plug out the ethernet cable. However, in the corporate environment, this might be extremely difficult to do (also would take a long time). The method below will disconnect from all the networks, including local and the internet, isolating each of the machines involved.

If you are using some type of cloud storage you are connected to, you should disconnect from it immediately. It is also advisable to disconnect all the external devices, such as USB flash sticks, external HDDs, etc. Once the malware elimination process is finished, you can connect your computers to the network and internet, as explained above, but by pressing Enable instead.

Find a working decryptor for your files

File encryption is a process that is similar to applying a password to a particular file or folder. However, from a technical point of view, encryption is fundamentally different due to its complexity. By using encryption, threat actors use a unique set of alphanumeric characters as a password that can not easily be deciphered if the process is performed correctly.

There are several algorithms that can be used to lock data (whether for good or bad reasons); for example, AES uses the symmetric method of encryption, meaning that the key used to lock and unlock files is the same. Unfortunately, it is only accessible to the attackers who hold it on a remote server – they ask for a payment in exchange for it. This simple principle is what allows ransomware authors to prosper in this illegal business.

While many high-profile ransomware strains such as Djvu or Dharma use immaculate encryption methods, there are plenty of failures that can be observed within the code of some novice malware developers. For example, the keys could be stored locally, which would allow users to regain access to their files without paying. In some cases, ransomware does not even encrypt files due to bugs, although victims might believe the opposite due to the ransom note that shows up right after the infection and data encryption is completed.

Therefore, regardless of which crypto-malware affects your files, you should try to find the relevant decryptor if such exists. Security researchers are in a constant battle against cybercriminals. In some cases, they manage to create a working decryption tool that would allow victims to recover files for free.

Once you have identified which ransomware you are affected by, you should check the following links for a decryptor:

No More Ransom Project

If you can’t find a decryptor that works for you, you should try the alternative methods we list below. Additionally, it is worth mentioning that it sometimes takes years for a working decryption tool to be developed, so there are always hopes for the future.

Create data backups to avoid file loss in the future

One of the many countermeasures for home users against ransomware is data backups. Even if your Windows get corrupted, you can reinstall everything from scratch and retrieve files from backups with minimal losses overall. Most importantly, you would not have to pay cybercriminals and risk your money as well.

Therefore, if you have already dealt with a ransomware attack, we strongly advise you to prepare backups for future use. There are two options available to you:

  • Backup on a physical external drive, such as a USB flash drive or external HDD.
  • Use cloud storage services.

The first method is not that convenient, however, as backups need to constantly be updated manually – although it is very reliable. Therefore, we highly advise choosing cloud storage instead – it is easy to set up and efficient to sustain. The problem with it is that storage space is limited unless you want to pay for the subscription.

Using Microsoft OneDrive

OneDrive is a built-in tool that comes with every modern Windows version. By default, you get 5 GB of storage that you can use for free. You can increase that storage space, but for a price. Here’s how to setup backups for OneDrive:

  1. Click on the OneDrive icon within your system tray.
  2. Select Help & Settings > Settings.Go to OneDrive settings
  3. If you don’t see your email under the Account tab, you should click Add an account and proceed with the on-screen instructions to set yourself up.Add OneDrive account
  4. Once done, move to the Backup tab and click Manage backup.Manage backup
  5. Select Desktop, Documents, and Pictures, or a combination of whichever folders you want to backup.
  6. Press Start backup.Pick which folders to sync

After this, all the files that are imported into the above-mentioned folders will be automatically backed for you. If you want to add other folders or files, you have to do that manually. For that, open File Explorer by pressing Win + E on your keyboard, and then click on the OneDrive icon. You should drag and drop folders you want to backup (or you can use Copy/Paste as well).

Using Google Drive

Google Drive is another great solution for free backups. The good news is that you get as much as 15GB for free by choosing this storage. There are also paid versions available, with significantly more storage to choose from.

You can access Google Drive via the web browser or use a desktop app you can download on the official website. If you want your files to be synced automatically, you will have to download the app, however.

  1. Download the Google Drive app installer and click on it.Install Google Drive app
  2. Wait a few seconds for it to be installed.Complete installation
  3. Now click the arrow within your system tray – you should see Google Drive icon there, click it once.Google Drive Sign in
  4. Click Get Started.Backup and sync
  5. Enter all the required information – your email/phone, and password.Enter email/phone
  6. Now pick what you want to sync and backup. You can click on Choose Folder to add additional folders to the list.
  7. Once done, pick Next.Choose what to sync
  8. Now you can select to sync items to be visible on your computer.
  9. Finally, press Start and wait till the sync is complete. Your files are now being backed up.

Report the incident to your local authorities

Ransomware is a huge business that is highly illegal, and authorities are very involved in catching malware operators. To have increased chances of identifying the culprits, the agencies need information. Therefore, by reporting the crime, you could help with stopping the cybercriminal activities and catching the threat actors. Make sure you include all the possible details, including how did you notice the attack, when it happened, etc. Additionally, providing documents such as ransom notes, examples of encrypted files, or malware executables would also be beneficial.

Law enforcement agencies typically deal with online fraud and cybercrime, although it depends on where you live. Here is the list of local authority groups that handle incidents like ransomware attacks, sorted by country:

Internet Crime Complaint Center IC3

If your country is not listed above, you should contact the local police department or communications center.

How to prevent from getting ransomware

Choose a proper web browser and improve your safety with a VPN tool

Online spying has got momentum in recent years and people are getting more and more interested in how to protect their privacy online. One of the basic means to add a layer of security – choose the most private and secure web browser. Although web browsers can’t grant full privacy protection and security, some of them are much better at sandboxing, HTTPS upgrading, active content blocking, tracking blocking, phishing protection, and similar privacy-oriented features. However, if you want true anonymity, we suggest you employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN – it can encrypt all the traffic that comes and goes out of your computer, preventing tracking completely.

Lost your files? Use data recovery software

While some files located on any computer are replaceable or useless, others can be extremely valuable. Family photos, work documents, school projects – these are types of files that we don’t want to lose. Unfortunately, there are many ways how unexpected data loss can occur: power cuts, Blue Screen of Death errors, hardware failures, crypto-malware attack, or even accidental deletion.

To ensure that all the files remain intact, you should prepare regular data backups. You can choose cloud-based or physical copies you could restore from later in case of a disaster. If your backups were lost as well or you never bothered to prepare any, Data Recovery Pro can be your only hope to retrieve your invaluable files.

About the author

Alice Woods

Alice Woods
– Likes to teach users about virus prevention

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