.dot virus Removal Guide
Description of .dot ransomware
What purpose does .dot virus have?
.dot ransomware virus is another extortionist that aims at various types of files and prevents users from using them. The ransomware uses AES encryption algorithm to protect various image, audio, video, text or other file types. As the name of the malware suggests, during data encoding procedure, it appends .dot file extension. Thus, after the attack, victims can identify occupied files easily. Unfortunately, it might not be easy to recover them. Well, if you have data backups, you are the lucky one who can survive the .dot virus attack without huge damage. Otherwise, people have two options: either paying the ransom for the cyber criminals or trying additional data recovery methods while malware researchers are developing a safe decryptor. Obviously, we do not recommend paying the ransom for the criminals because this activity might end up not in your favour. As soon as you find out about ransomware attack, you should scan the computer with ReimageIntego and perform the automatic .dot removal.
Nevertheless, hackers give direct commands in the help_decrypt.txt file; you should behave oppositely. People standing behind .dot virus demands to pay the fixed amount of Bitcoins. The size of the ransom might vary due to the amount and importance of the encrypted files. Usually, cyber criminals ask to pay around 1 Bitcoin. However, sometimes they ask to transfer even more money using Tor browser. This network allows authors of the .dot ransomware to stay anonymous and avoid legal punishment. Thus, if they won’t provide you a decryption software, legal institutions barely can help to get back your money. Therefore, by paying the ransom, you might end up with an even bigger loss. The main purpose of the ransomware is to swindle the money from computer users, and data recovery is just a matter of hackers’ conscience. Thus, we believe you should remove .dot from the computer and look for the alternative data recovery methods.
.dot ransomware might get inside the computer with a help of an infected email attachment and encrypt various files.
Why was the computer infected with ransomware?
Dot ransomware has been created as an illegal money making tool. Thus, cyber criminals hoped that you would be willing to transfer the demanded amount of Bitcoins to rescue your files. However, ransomware distribution requires more than hopes. Developers of this crypto-malware use two distribution and infiltration methods. One of them is malicious spam emails. Therefore, .dot ransomware might get inside your computer when you open the attached document, supposedly sent from well-known companies, retailers, organisations or governmental institutions. Indeed, you might be easily tricked by a perfectly crafted fraudulent email. Hence, you should not rush opening all attached files before double-checking the information about the message content and the sender. Another way how .dot malware might get inside the system are exploit kits. This method allows using security vulnerabilities to attack the computer. Thus, it’s important to keep all your software updated. What is more, installation of the antivirus program also minimises the risk of encountering the file-encrypting virus.
.dot virus removal instructions
Manual ransomware removal is a complicated procedure, and we do not recommend it for the victims. The .dot file virus might pretend to be a legitimate system file. Thus, trying to identify malicious files might be hard. Bear in mind that you might make a mistake and remove important system files instead of virus-related components. There’s no doubt that you might cause irreparable damage to your device. Thus, we firmly recommend performing the automatic .dot removal. This elimination method requires installing professional malware removal program and running a full system scan. We recommend using one of these programs: ReimageIntego, Malwarebytes or SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner. Sometimes file-encrypting viruses are capable of preventing users from installing security tools or accessing them. In this case, follow our prepared instructions below. They will help to disable the virus and remove .dot malware automatically.
Getting rid of .dot virus. Follow these steps
In-depth guide for the .dot elimination
It’s possible that .dot file virus blocks access to the security programs or prevents from installing them. In this case, you need to reboot your computer to the Safe Mode with Networking. It helps to disable the virus and perform the automatic removal.
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 .dot using System Restore
System Restore method also helps to disable the virus in order to install or access malware removal program.
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 .dot and then click on the Next button again.
- To start system restore, click Yes.
Bonus: Restore your filesUsing the tutorial provided above you should be able to eliminate .dot from the infected device. novirus.uk team has also prepared an in-depth data recovery guide which you will also find above.
At the moment, the only free and safe data recovery option is backups. However, lots of computer users learn about the necessity to back up too late. If you do not have backups too, you can try alternative methods that might help to restore at least some of your files.
There are a couple of methods you can apply to recover data encrypted by .dot:
Data Recovery Pro might help to restore files encrypted by .dot ransomware
Data Recovery Pro offers a chance to restore encrypted files automatically. This program is designed to restore deleted, corrupted and encrypted files; however, you should not forget that it’s not a .dot decryptor.
- Download Data Recovery Pro;
- Install Data Recovery on your computer following the steps indicated in the software’s Setup;
- Run the program to scan your device for the data encrypted by .dot ransomware;
- Recover the data.
Windows Previous Version feature might help to rescue individual files encrypted by .dot malware
This method requires enabled System Restore function on your computer. Thus, if it was activated before ransomware attack, please follow the steps and copy earlier saved copies of the encrypted files.
- Right-click on the encrypted document you want to recover;
- Click “Properties” and navigate to “Previous versions” tab;
- In the “Folder versions” section look for the available file copies. Choose the desired version and press “Restore”.
ShadowExplorer might help to recover files encrypted by .dot virus
ShadowExplorer uses Shadow Volume Copies for data recovery. Thus, if .dot file virus hasn’t deleted them, follow these steps:
- Download Shadow Explorer (http://shadowexplorer.com/);
- Install Shadow Explorer on your computer following the instructions in the software’s Setup Wizard;
- Run the program. Navigate to the menu on the top-left corner and select a disk containing your encrypted files. Look through the available folders;
- When you find the folder you want to recover, right-click it and select “Export”. Also, choose where the recovered data will be stored.
We are sorry, but .dot decryptor is not available yet.
It is strongly recommended to take precautions and secure your computer from malware attacks. To protect your PC from .dot 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 .dot ransomware
Prevent the government from spying on you
As there is a growing debate in government about collecting users' data and spying on citizens, you should take a closer look at this issue and find out what shady ways of gathering information can be used to collect information about you. You need to browse anonymously if you want to avoid any government-initiated spying and tracking of information.
You can enjoy secure internet browsing and minimize the risk of intrusion into your system if you use Private Internet Access VPN program. This VPN application creates a virtual private network and provides access to the required data without any content restrictions.
Control government and other third party access to your data and ensure safe web browsing. Even if you do not engage in illegal activities and trust your ISP, we recommend being careful about your security. You should take extra precautions and start using a VPN program.
Recover files damaged by a dangerous malware attack
Despite the fact that there are various circumstances that can cause data to be lost on a system, including accidental deletion, the most common reason people lose photos, documents, videos, and other important data is the infection of malware.
Some malicious programs can delete files and prevent the software from running smoothly. However, there is a greater threat from the dangerous viruses that can encrypt documents, system files, and images. Ransomware-type viruses focus on encrypting data and restricting users’ access to files, so you can permanently lose personal data when you download such a virus to your computer.
The ability to unlock encrypted files is very limited, but some programs have a data recovery feature. In some cases, the Data Recovery Pro program can help recover at least some of the data that has been locked by a virus or other cyber infection.