What is Ghost ransomware? And how does it execute its attack?
Ghost ransomware is a crypto-malware that was first reported on November 17, 2018. It is also known as “Ghosthammer” ransomware and demands a ransom of $500 from its victims. It is reported to register a system service branded as “Ghost” which stops the database processes before the encryption process is started.
The instant it infects a computer system, it drops its malicious payload in the system which is the one that launches and represses system processes. It also downloads several malicious components from a remote server and uses a data harvesting module that collects information from the system. The harvested data is then sent to the remote server and is then processed for the second module called stealth protection. This second module is used to apply a signature scan that detects any antivirus programs, virtual machine hosts and sandbox environments and prevent them from interfering with the attack. Shortly after these modules are implemented, Ghost ransomware will begin encrypting its targeted data that are mostly user-generated such as images, documents, audio files, videos, database, and many more. After the encryption, Ghost ransomware will mark each encrypted file with the .Ghost extension, signifying that they are no longer accessible. Once the encryption is completed, it opens a program window and a text file named “how to get back you files.txt” both of which contains the following message:
All your files have been encrypted
All your files have been encrypted, but don’t worry. I have not deleted them yet.
To desencrypt them, you have to pay 0.08116 bitcoin to following address:
Them, send a mail to [email protected] with your CODE ID.
I’m sorry for the inconvenience caused.
How does Ghost ransomware spread over the web?
Ghost ransomware can spread the web using malicious attachments that are attached to dubious-looking emails. There are also times when these malicious emails contain suspicious links that may redirect you to the direct source of the crypto-malware which is why you must always double check any file you come across the web no matter where you got it. It won’t also hurt if you always keep both the security programs and the system updated.
Make use of the steps provided below to wipe out Ghost ransomware from your PC successfully.
Step 1: First, close the program window of Ghost ransomware as well as other opened programs and if you can’t any of them, tap Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys to launch the Task Manager.
Step 2: Go to Processes and look for the malicious processes of Ghost ransomware such as “Ghost.exe”, “GhostService.exe”, GhostService.exe.config, “GhostService.exe” then right click on it and select End Process or End Task.
Step 3: Close the Task Manager and open Control Panel by pressing the Windows key + R, then type in “appwiz.cpl” and then click OK or press Enter.
GhostService.exe”, GhostService.exe.config, “GhostService.exe”
Step 5: Close Control Panel and then tap Win + E to launch File Explorer.
Step 6: After opening File Explorer, navigate to the following directories below and look for Ghost ransomware’s malicious components like GhostService.exe, ReadME-Ghost.txt, ReadME-Ghost.txt.Ghost and other suspicious-looking files and then erase them all.
Step 7: Close the File Explorer.
Before you proceed to the next steps below, make sure that you are tech savvy enough to the point where you know exactly how to use and navigate your computer’s Registry. Keep in mind that any changes you make will highly impact your computer. To save you the trouble and time, you can just use [product-name], this system tool is proven to be safe and excellent enough that hackers won’t be able to hack into it. But if you can manage Windows Registry well, then by all means go on to the next steps.
Step 8: Tap Win + R to open Run and then type in regedit in the field and tap enter to pull up Windows Registry.
Step 9: Navigate to the listed paths below and look for the registry keys and sub-keys created by Ghost ransomware.
- HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\
- HKEY_USERS\.DEFAULT\Control Panel\Desktop\
Step 10: Delete the registry keys and sub-keys created by Ghost ransomware.
Step 11: Close the Registry Editor.
Step 12: Empty your Recycle Bin.
Try to recover your encrypted files using their Shadow Volume copies
Restoring your encrypted files using Windows’ Previous Versions feature will only be effective if Ghost ransomware hasn’t deleted the shadow copies of your files. But still, this is one of the best and free methods there is, so it’s definitely worth a shot.
To restore the encrypted file, right-click on it and select Properties, a new window will pop-up, then proceed to Previous Versions. It will load the file’s previous version before it was modified. After it loads, select any of the previous versions displayed on the list like the one in the illustration below. And then click the Restore button.
After you execute the steps given above, you need to continue the removal process of Ghost ransomware using a reliable program like [product-name]. How? Follow the advanced removal steps below.
- Turn on your computer. If it’s already on, you have to reboot it.
- After that, the BIOS screen will be displayed, but if Windows pops up instead, reboot your computer and try again. Once you’re on the BIOS screen, repeat pressing F8, by doing so the Advanced Option shows up.
- To navigate the Advanced Option use the arrow keys and select Safe Mode with Networking then hit
- Windows will now load the Safe Mode with Networking.
- Press and hold both R key and Windows key.
- If done correctly, the Windows Run Box will show up.
- Type in the URL address, [product-url] in the Run dialog box and then tap Enter or click OK.
- After that, it will download the program. Wait for the download to finish and then open the launcher to install the program.
- Once the installation process is completed, run [product-code] to perform a full system scan.
- After the scan is completed click the “Fix, Clean & Optimize Now” button.