AES-NI ransomware sounds very polite as for the malware of its kind. It apologizes for executing its encryption payload, yet insists you need to pay. Otherwise, the remote server is not going to release the decryption key. The latter is the only plausible means which can undo the encryption caused by the AES-NI extortion virus.
To get onto your PC, the infection leverages a number of infection vectors. Among them, spamming prevails. Most of the invasions happen due to the users’ failure to implement basic verification of the incoming mail. Opening any attachments without proper verification is a fairly bad idea. Even your trusted contacts may send infecting attachments as they get compromised by the hackers.
Once the download completes, the infection deploys its installation campaign. The installation is extremely sophisticated. The infection is able to disguise itself as a host file. It becomes integrated with svchost.exe, which is a native system file. That aggravates early detection and removal of AES-NI ransomware.
The installation does not instantly scramble the data on a host machine. Quite on contrary, the rogue may linger for quite a while. It spies after the compromised device. The bulk of data flows to the remote server. Allegedly, the threat actors examine the logs to decide on the amount of ransom they would claim.
Eventually, AES-NI virus proceeds with the encryption. The content of affect files undergoes extremely deep modification. That allows no room for brute-forcing as a means of recovery. “.aes_ni_0day” is a possible extension added by the virus. Meanwhile, most of the users report. AES-NI extra appendix to their filenames.
To communicate with its victims, the malware issues a notice that, again, sounds too mild as for such a severe piece of malware. It even says ‘sorry’, yet does not forget to ask for some bitcoin. The amount payable, if converted to fiat currency, may exceed thousands of US dollars. The ransom note indicates the email for decryption queries and the mandatory details to be notified by the victim. It observes the response may be delayed as the security researchers block the account of the crooks. Hopefully, they will soon eradicate the entire scam. Meanwhile, the best practice of ransom-free recovery after the AES-NI encryption-for ransom is available below.
Automatic removal of AES-NI ransomware
The benefits of using the automatic security suite to get rid of this infection are obvious: it scans the entire system and detects all potential fragments of the virus, so you are a few mouse clicks away from a complete fix.
- Download and install recommended malware security suite
- Select Start Computer Scan feature and wait until the utility comes up with the scan report. Proceed by clicking on the Fix Threats button, which will trigger a thorough removal process to address all the malware issues compromising your computer and your privacy.
Restore files locked by AES-NI virus
AES-NI ransomware virus represents a unique category of malicious software whose attack surface reaches beyond the operating system and its components, which is why removing the virus itself is a part of the fix only. As it has been mentioned, it encrypts one’s personal information, so the next phase of the overall remediation presupposes reinstating the files that will otherwise remain inaccessible.
Launch data recovery software
Similarly to the rest of its fellow-infections, AES-NI most likely follows an operational algorithm where it erases the original versions of the victim’s files and actually encrypts their copies. This peculiarity might make your day, because forensics-focused applications like Data Recovery Pro are capable of restoring the information that has been removed. As the virus further evolves, its modus operandi may be altered – in the meanwhile, go ahead and try this.
Take advantage of Volume Shadow Copy Service
This technique is based on using the native backup functionality that’s shipped with Windows operating system. Also referred to as Volume Snapshot Service (VSS), this feature makes regular backups of the user’s files and keeps their most recent versions as long as System Restore is on. AES-NI ransomware hasn’t been found to affect these copies therefore the restoration vector in question is strongly recommended. The two sub-sections below highlight the automatic and manual workflow.
- a) Use Shadow Explorer
Shadow Explorer is an applet that provides an easy way of retrieving previous versions of files and folders. Its pro’s include an intuitive interface where the computer’s entire file hierarchy is displayed within one window. Just pick the hard disk volume, select the object or directory to be restored, right-click on it and choose Export. Follow the app’s prompts to get the job done.
- b) Use file properties
Essentially, what the above-mentioned Shadow Explorer tool does is it automates the process that can otherwise be performed manually via the Properties dialog for individual files. This particular approach is more cumbrous but just as effective as its software-based counterpart, so you can proceed by right-clicking on a specific file, which has been encrypted by AES-NI ransomware, and selecting Properties in the context menu. The tab named Previous Versions is the next thing to click – it displays available versions of the file by date of the snapshot creation. Pick the latest copy and complete the retrieval by following the prompts.
Data backups work wonders
Ransomware like AES-NI ransomware isn’t nearly as almighty and destructive in case you run regular file backups to the cloud or external data media. The virus itself can be completely removed in a matter of minutes, and the distorted information can then be just as easily recovered from the backup. Luckily, this is a growing trend, so ransom Trojans are hopefully going to become less subversive in the near future.
Verify thoroughness of the removal
Having carried out the instructions above, add a finishing touch to the security procedure by running an additional computer scan to check for residual malware activity