CTB Locker virus Removal Guide
Description of CTB Locker virus
CTB Locker virus: what should you know about this computer threat?
CTB Locker virus, also known as CTB-Locker ransomware, is a malicious computer threat which will put your precious files in danger. This virus has been around since July 2014 and has already hijacked numerous computers worldwide. It works similarly to other viruses of the same category, such as Locky virus, CryptoWall, and CryptoLocker, etc. Once it enters the victim’s computer, it begins scanning it for files and encrypts them using a complex encryption algorithm. After this process is done, the user loses access to its files and will not be able to regain it unless the CTB Locker encryption key is purchased from the virus creators. Because of such illegal profit-making, programs like CTB Locker earn their name as ransom-based malware. If you notice that you cannot reach your files anymore, or they feature an unusual .ctbl extension, you should take action immediately. Scan your system with some reputable antivirus tool, like ReimageIntego to see if your files are truly in danger. In case, your antivirus finds this threat, remove CTB Locker virus from your computer ASAP! You still might be able to save some of your files if you are quick to terminate the threat early in the process.
CTB Locker does not encrypt your files for fun. Ransom-gathering is the main focus of its developers, so they are trying their best to make this malicious product as widespread as possible. The CTB Locker is usually distributed through infected spam attachments, supposedly featuring some important information. Once the file is opened, the virus immediately begins it malicious processes. The virus may target any of your files, so none of your pictures, videos, music files or other documents are safe. What is more, the decryption key, with which these files may possibly be unlocked is safely stored on a remote server, far from the virus victim’s reach. Also, to make sure all the possible options to retrieve the files are eliminated, this virus deletes the shadow copies of the files so they cannot be restored from the backups, using the Volume Shadow Copy Service. After the files are encrypted, a .txt or HTML file is added to every folder that contains infected documents. In the note, it is explained that the files on the computer have been taken ‘hostage’ and that the computer owner has to pay a considerable amount of money to be able to access them again. Usually, the required sum varies from around $150 or £100. Of course, just like other ransomware viruses, CTB Locker demands it to be paid in BitCoin virtual money. In the ransom note, the victim is also provided several links to the sites where the decryption key can be purchased. Besides, these links lead to an anonymous an anonymous TOR network, which is a perfect platform for the cyber villains to remain incognito. Nevertheless, security experts warn the infected users not to attempt accessing the sites. No matter how valuable your files are, accessing the unreliable sites and transferring money to the cyber criminals to retrieve them can expose you to even more serious scams. Having in mind that there is no decryption tool to unlock your files and money transaction to unreliable criminals is also not an option, the CTB Locker removal is most probably the wisest choice you are left with. Do not hesitate and delete this virus from your computer for good.
How can my computer get infected with this virus and how can I avoid it?
As we already mentioned, CTB Locker is usually distributed through email. The infected attachments are usually sent with a message, claiming that the victim must download the attached file to see some important invoice information, purchase confirmation, etc. In fact, once the infected file is downloaded and opened, the virus infiltrates the system. Another way for this virus to spread is through fake software updates and other pop-up advertisements you may encounter while browsing on unreliable websites. Java or Flash Player are the most common programs features in these fake ads. You have to make sure not to click on them or download the suggested products because otherwise, you may end up with the CTB Locker or any other ransomware virus on your computer.
If you want to avoid this virus from hijacking your computer and stealing your files, there are three fundamental steps to be taken in order to ensure your system is protected.
- Do not open emails or download attachments received from suspicious sources. Avoid ‘Spam’ folder because the most of the potentially hazardous email are usually automatically placed in this folder by your email provider’s security filter. Also, do not forget to browse the internet more attentively and do not be tempted by different fake offers you might receive online.
- Keep a backup of your files. Keeping your file shadow copies is not enough, since the CTB Locker virus deletes them from your computer, so you have to keep your files in some external storage. You can trust external hard drives, USB drives, CD’s and DVD’s to keep your information safe. However, do not forget to remove the virus from your system entirely before you attempt to recover your files from these external storages.
- Finally, obtain a trustworthy antivirus suite. A sophisticated antivirus software will remove the virus from your computer and assist you in fighting back the viruses and other online threats.
CTB Locker removal suggestions:
Sadly, but the CTB Locker removal will not help you to unlock your files. However, it is essential to eliminate this virus from your computer if you want to continue using it. You will need a powerful tool to remove this dangerous virus from your computer. You can use the already mentioned SpyHunter or any other acknowledged antivirus you think you can trust with the safety of your computer. There have been reports that antivirus sometimes does not initiate if the computer is under the CTB Locker’s control. In such case, you can try disconnecting your device from the network or follow our expert-prepared instructions provided below.
Getting rid of CTB Locker virus. Follow these steps
In-depth guide for the CTB Locker elimination
The elimination guide can appear too difficult if you are not tech-savvy. It requires some knowledge of computer processes since it includes system changes that need to be performed correctly. You need to take steps carefully and follow the guide avoiding any issues created due to improper setting changes. Automatic methods might suit you better if you find the guide too difficult.
Step 1. Launch Safe Mode with Networking
Safe Mode environment offers better results of manual virus removal
Windows 7 / Vista / XP
- Go to Start.
- Choose Shutdown, then Restart, and OK.
- When your computer boots, start pressing the F8 button (if that does not work, try F2, F12, Del, etc. – it all depends on your motherboard model) a few times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
- Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.
Windows 10 / Windows 8
- Right-click the Start button and choose Settings.
- Scroll down to find Update & Security.
- On the left, pick Recovery.
- Scroll to find Advanced Startup section.
- Click Restart now.
- Choose Troubleshoot.
- Go to Advanced options.
- Select Startup Settings.
- Press Restart.
- Choose 5) Enable Safe Mode with Networking.
Step 2. End questionable processes
You can rely on Windows Task Manager that finds all the random processes in the background. When the intruder is triggering any processes, you can shut them down:
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys to open Windows Task Manager.
- Click on More details.
- Scroll down to Background processes.
- Look for anything suspicious.
- Right-click and select Open file location.
- Go back to the Process tab, right-click and pick End Task.
- Delete the contents of the malicious folder.
Step 3. Check the program in Startup
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard again.
- Go to the Startup tab.
- Right-click on the suspicious app and pick Disable.
Step 4. Find and eliminate virus files
Data related to the infection can be hidden in various places. Follow the steps and you can find them:
- Type in Disk Cleanup in Windows search and press Enter.
- Select the drive (C: is your main drive by default and is likely to be the one that has malicious files in) you want to clean.
- Scroll through the Files to delete and select the following:
Temporary Internet Files
- Pick Clean up system files.
- You can also look for other malicious files hidden in the following folders (type these entries in Windows Search and press Enter):
After you are finished, reboot the PC in normal mode.
Eliminate CTB Locker using System Restore
Step 1: Restart your computer in Safe Mode with Command Prompt
Windows 7 / Vista / XP
- Go to Start → Shutdown → Restart → OK.
- As soon as your computer starts, start pressing F8 key repeatedly before the Windows logo shows up.
- Choose Command Prompt from the list
Windows 10 / Windows 8
- Click on the Power button at the Windows login screen, and then press and hold Shift key on your keyboard. Then click Restart.
- Then select Troubleshoot → Advanced options → Startup Settings and click Restart.
- Once your computer starts, select Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt from the list of options in Startup Settings.
Step 2: Perform a system restore to recover files and settings
- When the Command Prompt window appears, type in cd restore and press Enter.
- Then type rstrui.exe and hit Enter..
- In a new window that shows up, click the Next button and choose a restore point that was created before the infiltration of CTB Locker and then click on the Next button again.
- To start system restore, click Yes.
It is strongly recommended to take precautions and secure your computer from malware attacks. To protect your PC from CTB Locker and other dangerous viruses, you should install and keep a powerful malware removal tool, for instance, ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes.
How to prevent from getting ransomware
A proper web browser and VPN tool can guarantee better safety
As online spying becomes an increasing problem, people are becoming more interested in how to protect their privacy. One way to increase your online security is to choose the most secure and private web browser. But if you want complete anonymity and security when surfing the web, you need Private Internet Access VPN service. This tool successfully reroutes traffic across different servers, so your IP address and location remain protected. It is also important that this tool is based on a strict no-log policy, so no data is collected and cannot be leaked or made available to first or third parties. If you want to feel safe on the internet, a combination of a secure web browser and a Private Internet Access VPN will help you.
Reduce the threat of viruses by backing up your data
Due to their own careless behavior, computer users can suffer various losses caused by cyber infections. Viruses can affect the functionality of the software or directly corrupt data on your system by encrypting it. These problems can disrupt the system and cause you to lose personal data permanently. There is no such threat if you have the latest backups, as you can easily recover lost data and get back to work.
It is recommended to update the backups in parallel each time the system is modified. This way, you will be able to access the latest saved data after an unexpected virus attack or system failure. By having the latest copies of important documents and projects, you will avoid serious inconveniences. File backups are especially useful if malware attacks your system unexpectedly. We recommend using the Data Recovery Pro program to restore the system.