X3M Ransomware - How To Remove?
X3M virus is a recent sample of crypto-ransomware viruses. During the first moments of its discovery, security researchers were confused about this infection because infected victims suggested that their data was prolonged with .locked extension. If you are an old fellow in our site, or any other webpage that focuses on newest malware releases, this extension should not be unheard-of. Despite primary impression, this crypto-virus was determined to be something fresh in the world of malware. Extension that is appended to the files, encrypted by X3M virus, were recognized to differ: .id-[A NUMBER]_x3m, .id-[A NUMBER]_locked, .id-[A NUMBER]_r9oj. If you have your data or even a server encrypted by X3M virus and require some help, leave a comment below and we will try to assist you. According to the testimonies from infected users, X3M might be targeting not only files, but also servers, but this is a yet unconfirmed theory.
Some more information about X3M ransomware
We assume that X3M virus does not proceed any differently from other ransomware with the same goal: money in the form of bitcoins. It is yet undetermined which algorithm for encryption is selected by the creators of X3M virus to encode files, but we have a suspicion that it might be one of the RSA or AES ciphers. Surprisingly, X3M virus seems to be capable of appending three different extensions that we have already mentioned in the introduction. For example, filename.jpg might become filename.jpg.id-2890192288_x3m. After that, the file is not going to be available for usage. The ransom note that the ransomware leaves behind is quite brief. Hackers simply inform their victims that their data has been corrupted. According to their convincing statements, there is no other method to restore files but to pay the demanded ransom. The cost of the application for decryption is identified to be 700 US dollars which is not such a small amount of money. Every victim receives an original identification ID. To negotiate the terms and receive the decryptor, hackers advise their victims to contact firstname.lastname@example.org email address.
What tactics for distribution does X3M ransomware embrace?
One of the victims explained that X3M virus affected his/hers computer after a remote desktop protocol port was opened on a router. This helps hackers connect to another computer via Internet connection. So it is presumable that this variant uses this strategy to infect computer devices. It also means that the hackers install the ransomware himself/herself who gains remote access to the device. After a malicious package is prepared, the encryption is going to take place and transform files into inaccessible. At some cases, that whole servers are going to be targeted. Of course, we cannot disregard the possibility that this ransomware spreads via a more traditional way: malicious spam campaigns. Make sure to never open letters that are suspicious.
Is there any hope for the files encrypted by X3M ransomware?
This ransomware called X3M is a recently discovered variant. Security researchers are still trying to find out its main features and find a solution. There is little that can be done to save the encrypted files now, but we guess that it would be possible to attempt to restore Shadow Volume copies. Samples that selected a similar strategy for distribution were noticed to leave these files intact. As for the tips for the future, you should remember no never open malicious email letters. For the sake of becoming immune to ransomware attacks, back up your files so you could retrieve them if needed. For example, in case of a ransomware infection. Another possible tricks to restore the files can be found in the section below. You can exploit universal file recovery programs. It is also explained how the Shadow Volume copies can be restored.
If you do not want to affect your device by wrongfully implementing these guidelines below, you can simply choose to proceed with a powerful anti-malware tool to remove this X3M virus. Reimage, Spyhunter or Malwarebytes will surely help you eliminate this threat
- Some more information about X3M ransomware
- What tactics for distribution does X3M ransomware embrace?
- Is there any hope for the files encrypted by X3M ransomware?
- Automatic X3M ransomware removal tools
- How to recover X3M ransomware encrypted files and remove the virus
- Step 1. Restore system into last known good state using system restore
- Step 2. Complete removal of X3M virus
- Step 3. Restore X3M ransomware affected files using Shadow Volume Copies
- Step 4. Use Data Recovery programs to recover X3M ransomware encrypted files
- Removal guides in other languages
Automatic X3M ransomware removal tools
How to recover X3M 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 X3M ransomware has infiltrated to your system and then click “Next”.
- To start System restore click “Yes”.
Step 2. Complete removal of X3M virus
After restoring your system, it is recommended to scan your computer with an anti-malware program, like Reimage and remove all malicious files related to X3M ransomware. You can check other tools here.
Step 3. Restore X3M ransomware 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 X3M virus 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 X3M ransomware 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 Data Recovery Pro (commercial)
- Install and scan for recently deleted files.
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.