Philadelphia virus Removal Guide
Description of Philadelphia ransomware virus
Is Philadelphia virus dangerous?
Philadelphia ransomware virus has been spotted and defeated by well-known virus researcher Fabian Wosar. An updated version of Stampado virus targets computers all over the world via phishing email messages, and after infiltration, it encrypts all files located on the infected computer with an asymmetric encryption algorithm. It puts .locked file extension to all corrupted data. However, F.Wosar cracked virus code and released data decryption toolin the middle of September. Needless to say that after the Philadelphia attack, you don’t need to consider paying the ransom. The size of the payment is still a mystery, but some sources claim that victims had to pay 0.3 Bitcoins, which equals to 145 GBP, for the decryption key. It’s considerably a small ransom, but no matter how much hackers ask, you should never sponsor the criminals. The first and the most important task after the attack is Philadelphia removal. We recommend installing and using a powerful anti-malware program for ransomware removal. If you want our advice, for this job we recommend employing ReimageIntego.
The creator of the Philadelphia virus, Rainmaker, tried to sell this file-encrypting virus on the dark market for only 400 USD. The malware was presented as a very sophisticated virus. Indeed, it has some unique features. One of them is a ‘Give mercy’ button that allows hackers to decrypt victim’s files for free. When Philadelphia ransomware encrypts user’s files, it delivers a window that includes ransom note and two timers. One of the timers shows the deadline how much time victim still has to pay the ransom. Another timer is called ‘Russian Roulette’ and it shows remaining time until the next file removal. Indeed, the virus is capable of deleting random files in particular time intervals. It’s the way how hacker encourages victims do not delay paying the ransom. As we already mentioned, you should not make the payment. However, you should quickly remove Philadelphia from your computer before it hasn’t deleted important files.
How to protect a computer from the ransomware?
In order to protect your computer from the ransomware and other computer infections you should stay away from high-risk websites (e.g., pornography sites, gambling sites, etc.), avoid clicking suspicious ads, use a reliable source for software downloads and install software using advanced installation mode. To maximize your computer’s security, you should install a strong antivirus program as well. Besides, cyber security specialists noticed that the number of ransomware attacks is growing, so it’s important to regularly backup your files and store them in the external devices. In the case of the attack, you will have the majority of important data.
Philadelphia removal and file decryption options
After ransomware attack, users have two important tasks to do. The first one is to remove Philadelphia virus from the computer and the second – to decrypt corrupted files. Bear in mind that you must complete these two tasks in this order! For ransomware elimination you have to employ a reputable anti-malware program, such as ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes. Of course, you can choose other security tools as well; however, we can assure that these programs are capable of removing malware effectively. Also, you should know that sometimes ransomware blocks access to an antivirus program. If you face this problem, check our instructions bellow.
After Philadelphia removal, you can finally try to recover corrupted files. If your files were encrypted, you should say ‘thank you’ to Fabian Wosar who has created a free decrypter tool.
Getting rid of Philadelphia virus. Follow these steps
In-depth guide for the Philadelphia 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 Philadelphia 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 Philadelphia 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 Philadelphia from the infected device. novirus.uk team has also prepared an in-depth data recovery guide which you will also find above.
There are a couple of methods you can apply to recover data encrypted by Philadelphia:
Restoring corrupted files with Data Recover Pro
Data Recover Pro might be useful to restore some files encrypted by Philadelphia removal. Follow these steps how to do use it:
- 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 Philadelphia ransomware;
- Recover the data.
Using System Restore function
System Restore function might be useful in recovering lost data as well. This method allows accessing some important files before they were encrypted.
- 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”.
Reovering files with a help of Shadow Explorer
If Philadelphia virus hasn’t deleted shadow volume copies, you can restore files using Shadow Explorer.
- 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.
It is strongly recommended to take precautions and secure your computer from malware attacks. To protect your PC from Philadelphia 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.