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What is Pain Locker ransomware? And how does it implement its attack?

Pain Locker ransomware is a file-encrypting malware and is the latest version of Everbe ransomware that first emerged at the end of May 2018. This new variant of Everbe uses the [[email protected]].pain extension in marking the files it encrypts. Once it infiltrates a computer, it implements a series of activities where it first launches its connection to a remote Command and Control server and sends data about the infected computer. After that, it downloads additional files which help it stay undetected from any antivirus software. Moreover, it also makes alterations in the Windows Registry in order to run on every system boot.
It then begins its process of scanning the entire drive of the computer to look for files with specific formats such as:
.3dm, .3g2, .3gp, .7zip, .aaf, .accdb, .aep, .aepx, .aet, .ai, .aif, .as, .as3, .asf, .asp, .asx, .avi, .bmp, .c, .class, .cpp, .cs, .csv, .dat, .db, .dbf, .doc, .docb, .docm, .docx, .dot, .dotm, .dotx, .dwg, .dxf, .efx, .eps, .fla, .flv, .gif, .h, .idml, .iff, .indb, .indd, .indl, .indt, .inx, .jar, .java, .jpeg, .jpg, .js, .m3u, .m3u8, .m4u, .max, .mdb, .mid, .mkv, .mov, .mp3, .mp4, .mpa, .mpeg, .mpg, .msg, .pdb, .pdf, .php, .plb, .pmd, .png, .pot, .potm, .potx, .ppam, .ppj, .pps, .ppsm, .ppsx, .ppt, .pptm, .pptx, .prel, .prproj, .ps, .psd, .py, .ra, .rar, .raw, .rb, .rtf, .sdf, .sdf, .ses, .sldm, .sldx, .sql, .svg, .swf, .tif, .txt, .vcf, .vob, .wav, .wma, .wmv, .wpd, .wps, .xla, .xlam, .xll, .xlm, .xls, .xlsb, .xlsm, .xlsx, .xlt, .xltm, .xltx, .xlw, .xml, .xqx, .xqx, .zip
The moment it finds these files, it encrypts them right away using a strong encryption algorithm. After encryption, Pain Locker ransomware appends the extension, [[email protected]].pain on each one of the locked files. Moreover, it also creates a text file named “!=How_recovery_files.txt” that states:
“PAIN LOCKER
Hello, dear friend!
All your files have been ENCRYPTED
Do you really want to restore your files?
Write to our email – [email protected] or [email protected] and tell us your unique ID – ID-
If you happen to be one of the victims of this file-encrypting malware, remember that paying the ransom won’t really fix your problem as crooks can’t really be trusted. The best thing you can do is to use other alternative ways in recovering your files rather than succumbing to the crooks’ demands.
How is the malicious payload of Pain Locker ransomware disseminated?
The malicious payload of Pain Locker ransomware, just like its predecessor, is disseminated via malware-laden emails. Usually, this kind of email is disguised to make it seems like the email is important to lure users into opening it and downloading its attachment – this is something you shouldn’t do no matter who sent the email.
To eliminate Pain Locker ransomware from your computer, follow the removal instructions prepared below.
Step 1: The first thing you need to do is to obliterate the process of Pain Locker ransomware by opening the Task Manager – simply tap the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys on your keyboard.
Step 2: After that, click the Processes tab and look for a suspicious-looking process that takes up most of your CPU’s resources and is most likely related to Pain Locker ransomware and then end them all.

Step 3: Now that the malicious process is eliminated, close the Task Manager.
Step 4: Next, tap Win + R, type in appwiz.cpl and click OK or tap Enter to open Control Panel’s list of installed programs.
Step 5: Under the list of installed programs, look for Pain Locker ransomware or anything similar and then uninstall it.

Step 6: Then close Control Panel and tap Win + E keys to launch File Explorer.
Step 7: Navigate to the following locations below and look for Pain Locker ransomware’s malicious components like the file named !=How_recovery_files.txt as well as other suspicious files it has created and downloaded into the system and then delete all of them.

  • %APPDATA%
  • %TEMP%
  • %WINDIR%\System32\Tasks
  • %APPDATA%\Microsoft\Windows\Templates\
  • %USERPROFILE%\Downloads
  • %USERPROFILE%\Desktop

Step 8: Close the File Explorer.
Before you go on any further, 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 9: Tap Win + R to open Run and then type in regedit in the field and tap enter to pull up Windows Registry.

Step 10: Navigate to the following path:

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Authentication\LogonUI\Background
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Personalization
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\ScreenSaveTimeOut
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop

Step 11: Delete the registry keys and sub-keys created by Pain Locker ransomware.
Step12. Close the Registry Editor and empty the Recycle Bin.
Try to recover your encrypted files using the Shadow Volume copies
Restoring your encrypted files using Windows’ Previous Versions feature will only be effective if Pain Locker 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’ve covered the steps provided above, you need to continue the removal process of Pain Locker ransomware using a reliable program like [product-name]. How? Follow the advanced removal steps below.
Perform a full system scan using [product-code]. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. Turn on your computer. If it’s already on, you have to reboot
  2. 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.

  1. To navigate the Advanced Option use the arrow keys and select Safe Mode with Networking then hit
  2. Windows will now load the SafeMode with Networking.
  3. Press and hold both R key and Windows key.

  1. If done correctly, the Windows Run Box will show up.
  2. Type in the URL address, [product-url] in the Run dialog box and then tap Enter or click OK.
  3. After that, it will download the program. Wait for the download to finish and then open the launcher to install the program.
  4. Once the installation process is completed, run [product-code] to perform a full system scan.

  1. After the scan is completed click the “Fix, Clean & Optimize Nowbutton.
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