Hakbit is a ransomware infection that asks for money from each victim who wants to get their files back. That it’s ransomware means that Hakbit encrypts files to make them impossible to access. To break the encryption, you could get the needed tools and information from the crypto-extortionists. However, they’re asking for money – $300. This makes Hakbit a type of extortion scheme. Luckily, a free decrypter was released recently.
Hakbit Crypted Ransomware quicklinks
- How to recognize Hakbit (crypted) ransomware
- How Hakbit (crypted) infects computers
- How to restore Hakbit files
- Automatic Malware removal tools
- How to recover Hakbit (.crypted) Ransomware 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:
- 2.Restore System files and settings.
- Step 4. Use Data Recovery programs to recover Hakbit (.crypted) Ransomware encrypted files
Hakbit and other ransomware infections certainly do have a devastating effect on their victims, causing them to sometimes lose all of their files, like family pictures, personal and school projects, as well as job files. Reliable ransomware programs recognize Hakbit as malware but not all antivirus programs are able to stop it before it finishes turning the victim’s files into random nonsense. Now, the files locked by Hakbit ransomware won’t open and are temporarily broken.
How to recognize Hakbit (crypted) ransomware
Files encrypted by Hakbit will have a new extension added – “.crypted”. For example, a file that used to be named “list.txt” becomes “list.txt.crypted”. It happens very suddenly, possibly in a few minutes, as Hakbit uses symmetric encryption, which is faster than asymmetric. So, one moment your files are normal, the next they have “crypted” as a file type. At the same time, Hakbit sets the computer’s background image to a red-on-white ransom note and opens the ransom note.
Hakbit features and problems:
|Type of threat||
|Hakbit ransomware infection symptoms||
|Restore files locked by Hakbit||
“crypted” isn’t a real file type here, files locked by ransomware don’t have to have specific extensions – “.crypted” just serves as a label. If you were to rename Hakbit-encrypted files to remove that “crypted” bit, the file still wouldn’t work. Usually, ransomware creators make up something for the extension but Hakbit’s creator chose “crypted”, the same suffix used by other ransomware viruses, including Retis, Fatboy, and Megalocker. This can make searching for information about Hakbit a little harder.
HELP_ME_RECPVER_MY_FILES.txt is the name of the ransom note left by Hakbit’s developers. The virus also changes the victim’s desktop background with the same text in it:
Atention! all your important files were encrypted!
to get your files back send 300 USD worth in Bitcoins and contact us with proof of payment and your Unique Identifier Key.
We will send you a decryption tool with your personal decryption password.
Where can you buy Bitcoins:
Contact: [email protected]
How Hakbit (crypted) infects computers
Hakbit is new, so not much is known about it. We do know that the ransom amount that it asks for ($300) is small compared to other ransomware, so, most likely, the targets of Hakbit ransomware are individual people and small businesses.
One of the ways that ransomware spreads to personal computers that Hakbit might have used is hiding in infected files uploaded online. Pirating sites and unofficial download pages could host files that, when they’re downloaded and run, immediately download Hakbit.
Another way for Hakbit to infect users is through email spam. This is when emails with mundane content like “your order has been canceled” or “see the attachment for your invoice” are sent to hundreds or thousands of email addresses. Attachments or links in these emails, when opened, can start downloading Hakbit.
It’s possible that Hakbit (.crypted) ransomware was distributed by a malicious website, automatically infecting those visitors who are vulnerable (for example, have outdated software).
Other ways for Hakbit to spread exist, such as:
- Downloaded by a trojan that infected the victims previously
- Planted after hacking the victim’s remote desktop connection
But these methods are unlikely to be used by Hakbit ransomware if it targets individual users.
How to restore Hakbit files
First of all, it’s important to get rid of the Hakbit ransomware infection. A malware remover like SpyHunter could help delete or quarantine the virus and prevent it from doing any more damage. This doesn’t fix the locked files, though.
If you didn’t make a backup of your files, you might be tempted to pay the ransom – but that’s not a good idea, and not just because that’d be rewarding Hakbit developer’s criminal behavior.
Hakbit asks for $300 in Bitcoin. Cryptocurrency has really allowed crypto-extortion to flourish because the payments are fast and public, not watched over by some authority. Because of that, the transactions can’t be reversed. If you sent money to Hakbit’s developer and they failed to deliver – tough luck, the money is gone. And, according to statistics, a lot of ransomware makers do not deliver.
It does appear as if Hakbit ransomware is not nearly as professional a virus as other, well-established families. It’s possible that the creator of this malware made mistakes that would allow Hakbit’s “crypted” files to be fixed without needing to contact the criminal behind this virus. Ransomware specialists do sometimes come up with a solution and make it available for everyone. If that ever happens, you can probably find out by checking nomoreransom.org – that’s where the list of ransomware decryption tools is maintained.
Update: that did indeed happen and a decrypter was released by Emsisoft for victims of Hakbit, no contacting the crypto-extortionists needed.
Unfortunately, Hakbit deletes file shadow copies. This means that restoring previous file versions won’t work (do try, though, because Hakbit ransomware might have just failed to work correctly). It’s possible that some files, such as archives, didn’t have all of their data locked, so you can try messing with those files (keep backups, though). Data recovery software might help you get back valuable data – it can detect and restore files that were deleted.
Automatic Malware removal tools
How to recover Hakbit (.crypted) Ransomware 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 → Restart → OK.
- Press F8 key repeatedly until Advanced Boot Options window appears.
- Choose Safe Mode with Command Prompt.
for Windows 8 / 10
- Press Power at Windows login screen. Then press and hold Shift key and click Restart.
- Choose Troubleshoot → Advanced Options → Startup Settings and click Restart.
- When it loads, select Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt from the list of Startup Settings.
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.
- Click “Next” in the windows that appeared.
- Select one of the Restore Points that are available before Hakbit Ransomware has infiltrated to your system and then click “Next”.
- To start System restore click “Yes”.
Step 2. Complete removal of Hakbit (.crypted) RansomwareAfter restoring your system, it is recommended to scan your computer with an anti-malware program, like Spyhunter and remove all malicious files related to Hakbit Ransomware. You can check other tools here.
Step 3. Restore Hakbit (.crypted) Ransomware affected files using Shadow Volume CopiesIf 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 Hakbit Ransomware 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 Properties → Previous 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.
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.
Step 4. Use Data Recovery programs to recover Hakbit (.crypted) Ransomware encrypted filesThere 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.