Berosuce File-Locker - How to remove

STOP/Djvu ransomware keeps spreading, with a new version being found every few days. Berosuce is one of them, found on the 17th of July. It’s distributed by disguising it as wanted software. Unsuspecting victims download and run it only to find their files locked and the “.berosuce” extension appended to their names.

Berosuce is the same type of virus as the other file-encrypting ransomware, like GandCrab (which had a free decrypter released and has recently been retired), Adame (a member of the Phobos family), or Matrix ransomware (which used malvertising to spread).

After being hit with Berosuce which seemingly breaks most of your files, it might look like the only way to move forward is to delete the files and start over. However, there is some hope to restore your data, even if the chances are small. A free decrypter that works in specific cases, as well as a couple of data recovery options. Before that, though, you should remove the virus.

Remove Berosuce ransomware

Scan the infected computer with Spyhunter, or some other antivirus that you trust. But removing just Berosuce is not good enough. Some versions of STOP/Djvu were distributed together with a data-stealer Azorult and you need to make sure that your computer is clear of it before you use it for anything important. Otherwise, your passwords and other private data could be leaked to criminals.

If you’re experiencing redirects when trying to visit certain websites (ones that have to do with cybersecurity), you can stop that by undoing the edits to your hosts file that Berosuce made. This guide has instructions. The developers of Berosuce likely didn’t want their victims to look for information about the virus online which is why they try to make some websites inaccessible.

Finally, make sure to update your antivirus and other software. New viruses require recent updates to your antivirus to be recognized, and known security bugs must be patched before they’re exploited.

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Characteristics of the virus

If you have file extensions visible on your system or if you view your files’ details, you will see that the locked files have the Berosuce type. The virus runs the contents of the files through a cryptographic algorithm to scramble them and make them look like gibberish to any program that tries to open them. Cryptography is supposed to be used to protect privacy but Berosuce and other ransomware viruses have abused the technology for profit.

picture.jpg -> picture.jpg.berosuce

After it’s done ruining your files, Berosuce creates a ransom note “_readme.txt”.


Don’t worry, you can return all your files!
All your files like photos, databases, documents and other important are encrypted with strongest encryption and unique key.
The only method of recovering files is to purchase decrypt tool and unique key for you.

The text of the note declares that the only way to return your files is to pay an extortion sum of nearly $1000 ($490 if you’re quick — which still is a ridiculous amount to pay for your own files). Whether the criminals (who are using [email protected], [email protected], @datarestore — the same email addresses as their last few viruses) keep their promise to those who pay isn’t certain. Some have been able to recover their data, others talk about being ignored or ridiculed after they paid.

Berosuce is distributed as software cracks, fake software, even included in freeware bundles. This means that the victims downloaded Berosuce themselves because they believed that they were downloading a safe program. To avoid malware infections like this, don’t disable your antivirus — ever. Don’t neglect to update your antivirus and other software, too. Files should be scanned before they’re opened or ran.

That last piece of advice about scanning you files applies to another way that ransomware spreads — through malicious email spam. Infected files are attached to emails or downloaded from links that were in the emails. Don’t trust strange, unsolicited, urgent yet impersonal emails that ask you to open a file, enable a macro, or extract an archive.

Berosuce ransomware, ransom note

How to decrypt Berosuce files

The good thing about ransomware families is how similar the individual versions are. There is a program that has been developed to decrypt some of the files encrypted by a variant of STOP/Djvu in specific circumstances (if Berosuce couldn’t contact the server that was supposed to give it the encryption key for your computer, the encryption was much more poorly secured than it should have been). It’s called STOPDecrypter and its creator is Demonslay335. Here is the link. Read the FAQ on the forum and try it on your Berosuce files.

If it doesn’t work, try the options listed below:

How to recover Berosuce File-Locker encrypted files and remove the virus

Step 1. Restore system into last known good state using system restore

1. Reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Command Prompt:

for Windows 7 / Vista/ XP
  • Start Shutdown RestartOK.
  • Press F8 key repeatedly until Advanced Boot Options window appears.
  • Choose Safe Mode with Command Prompt. Windows 7 enter safe mode

for Windows 8 / 10
  • Press Power at Windows login screen. Then press and hold Shift key and click Restart. Windows 8-10 restart to safe mode
  • Choose TroubleshootAdvanced OptionsStartup Settings and click Restart.
  • When it loads, select Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt from the list of Startup Settings. Windows 8-10 enter safe mode

2.Restore System files and settings.

  • When Command Prompt mode loads, enter cd restore and press Enter.
  • Then enter rstrui.exe and press Enter again.CMD commands
  • Click “Next” in the windows that appeared. Restore point img1
  • Select one of the Restore Points that are available before Berosuce File Locker has infiltrated to your system and then click “Next”. Restore point img2
  • To start System restore click “Yes”. Restore point img3

Step 2. Complete removal of Berosuce File-Locker

After restoring your system, it is recommended to scan your computer with an anti-malware program, like Spyhunter and remove all malicious files related to Berosuce File Locker. You can check other tools here.  

Step 3. Restore Berosuce File-Locker affected files using Shadow Volume Copies

If you do not use System Restore option on your operating system, there is a chance to use shadow copy snapshots. They store copies of your files that point of time when the system restore snapshot was created. Usually Berosuce File Locker tries to delete all possible Shadow Volume Copies, so this methods may not work on all computers. However, it may fail to do so. Shadow Volume Copies are only available with Windows XP Service Pack 2, Windows Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8. There are two ways to retrieve your files via Shadow Volume Copy. You can do it using native Windows Previous Versions or via Shadow Explorer. a) Native Windows Previous Versions Right-click on an encrypted file and select PropertiesPrevious versions tab. Now you will see all available copies of that particular file and the time when it was stored in a Shadow Volume Copy. Choose the version of the file you want to retrieve and click Copy if you want to save it to some directory of your own, or Restore if you want to replace existing, encrypted file. If you want to see the content of file first, just click Open.
Previous version
b) Shadow Explorer It is a program that can be found online for free. You can download either a full or a portable version of Shadow Explorer. Open the program. On the left top corner select the drive where the file you are looking for is a stored. You will see all folders on that drive. To retrieve a whole folder, right-click on it and select “Export”. Then choose where you want it to be stored.
Shadow explorer

Step 4. Use Data Recovery programs to recover Berosuce File-Locker encrypted files

There are several data recovery programs that might recover encrypted files as well. This does not work in all cases but you can try this:
  • We suggest using another PC and connect the infected hard drive as slave. It is still possible to do this on infected PC though.
  • Download a data recovery program.
  • Install and scan for recently deleted files. Data Recovery Pro
Note: In many cases it is impossible to restore data files affected by modern ransomware. Thus I recommend using decent cloud backup software as precaution. We recommend checking out Carbonite, BackBlaze, CrashPlan or Mozy Home.

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