TeslaCrypt, emerged in the March of 2015, is a new ransomware targeted at video games players. It works really similar to all other major ransomware viruses – first of all, it secretly enters the computer, then, encrypts files and asks for a specific ransom to decrypt the files. However, it’s a little bit different from other ransomwares. TeslaCrypt uses an encryption method called AES and is targeted specifically at gamers.
Ransomware like TorrentLocker or CTBLocker are targeted at various files, like videos, photos, documents, etc., while TeslaCrypt is looking to encrypt files related to 40 different video games. This ransomware is looking to encrypt files belonging to RPG Maker, Call of Duty, Dragon Age, StarCraft, MineCraft, World of Warcraft, World of Tanks, or Steam programs.
Furthermore, most other developers of ransomware ask users to pay a ransom in bitcoins – it’s the only option. In the case of TeslaCrypt it’s up to you – you can do it via bitcoins payment system or PayPal cash cards. While Paypal is a way more popular option among regular Internet users than bticoins, you should think twice – it costs about $1000 USD to pay a ransom via Paypal and only about $500 USD to perform this using bitcoins. It is important to emphasise here that we are not encouraging you to pay the ransom in either of the ways. It is strange, though, why these hackers leave the victims with the PayPal option, as it is obvious that it’s easier to track payments made via this online payments system.
TeslaCrypt is distributed by the Angler Exploit Kit, which downloads the infection on the victim’s computer, when he (she) visits some compromised website. It is clear that, once inside, this application will scan all files on your computer to decrypt a portion of them. Here are the file types that can be encrypted by TeslaCrypt:
After the encryption, those extensions will be changed to .ecc extension. Moreover, this ransomware will delete all Shadow Volume Copies or even your restore points, so you will not be able to make a system restore.
There are 4 big versions of Teslacrypt ransomware. They differ by extensions and (partly) algorithm used, thus their decryption might be different.
The 3rd version of TeslaCrypt uses .xxx, .ttt and .micro extensions.
The 4th version does not use extensions at all. This makes identifying it quite difficult.
UPDATE: cyber security researchers finally developed a way to decrypt files encrypted by TeslaCrypt ransomware. So if you want to get rid of this virus and retrieve your files, you can download this TeslaCrypt Decryptor.
Then it is recommended to scan your computer with Spyhunter or Malwarebytes to remove any other viruses that might be infiltrated into your system by TeslaCrypt ransomware. An anti-malware program will also protect your computer from any security threats awaiting on the World Wide Web. There is also the manual removal guide at the end.
- Automatic Malware removal tools
- How to recover TeslaCrypt 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 TeslaCrypt encrypted files
Automatic Malware removal tools
How to recover TeslaCrypt 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 TeslaCrypt has infiltrated to your system and then click “Next”.
- To start System restore click “Yes”.
Step 2. Complete removal of TeslaCryptAfter restoring your system, it is recommended to scan your computer with an anti-malware program, like Spyhunter and remove all malicious files related to TeslaCrypt. You can check other tools here.
Step 3. Restore TeslaCrypt 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 TeslaCrypt 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 TeslaCrypt 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.