Ransom:MSIL/Vaultlock.A is ransomware designed to sneak into your system, encrypt your files and demand a ransom fee in order to decrypt them.
How Does Ransom:MSIL/Vaultlock.A Work?
Ransom:MSIL/Vaultlock.A is no different than most of the ransomware out there. Its sole purpose is collecting money from its victims. Once it enters your system, it will:
- Prevent you from accessing Windows
- Encrypt your files so you cannot open them
- Display a message stating the amount you need to pay in an exchange for a decryption key
According to Microsoft, the Ransom:MSIL/Vaultlock.A will search for “folders with the strings “pictures” or “backup” in the file name, then it [will] encrypt the files with the following extensions:.3ds, .der, .jpeg, .odp, .pptx, .txt, .3fr, .dng, .jpg, .ods, .psd, .vsdx, .accdb, .doc, .kdc, .odt, .pst, .wb2, .ai, .docm, .mdb, .orf, .ptx, .wpd, .arw, .docx, .mdf, .p12, .r3d, .wps, .bay, .dwg, .mef.”
After it encrypts your files, the ransomware will show a window with instructions about how to get your files back. The problem, however, is that even if you pay the demanded amount and follow the instructions strictly, you still have no guarantee that you will be granted access to your files again. That is why our malware experts strongly recommend not paying the ransom.
How Does Ransom:MSIL/Vaultlock.A Enter My PC?
Ransom:MSIL/Vaultlock.A enters your PC without your consent or knowledge. Usually, other malware already present in your system serves as a backdoor for that threat to enter your PC undisturbed.
The most common way to get infected by most types of malicious programs is by downloading free programs from the Web. They are usually bundled with all kinds of PUPS (potentially unwanted programs) which enter your system in case you fail to customize the installation process (custom installation means to disable all default features you know nothing about, disallow the bundling option, uncheck the “recommended” settings, etc.).
How to Remove Ransom:MSIL/Vaultlock.A without Paying the Ransom?
Some ransomware versions are called “FBI virus” due to the fake FBI logos they use in order to scare the victims into believing they have done something illegal with their PCs. As a result, they are asked to pay a fine to the police or government.
Whatever the ransom message is, do not trust it and do not follow its instructions. These scare tactics are simply designed to make you pay the demanded amount before you could even tell anyone who is capable of restoring your PC.
So, in case you are already infected, you must download a reliable anti-malware tool from a clean computer. The tool will perform a full system scan and will remove all the malicious files, thus enabling you to access your files again.