Onion Ransomware

Posted: August 27, 2015
Threat Metric
Threat Level: 5/10
Infected PCs 1,206

Onion Ransomware Description

The Onion Ransomware is a file encryptor that modifies your files for the purpose of holding them for ransom. Like other file encryption Trojans, the Onion Ransomware can't offer any guarantee that paying its ransom will return your files to a usable condition. As a consequence of that risk, malware researchers don't advise rewarding the Onion Ransomware's developers in response to an infection. Common backup strategies can prevent the Onion Ransomware from causing any long- term harm while good anti-malware products may remove the Onion Ransomware from your machine.

The Many Layers of a File Ransoming Attack

The Onion Ransomware is a Trojan more often delivered to corporate targets than to random individuals, which distinguishes its campaign from the Critoni Ransomware (one of its major branch-offs). Most threat campaigns targeting companies and similarly-structured institutions utilize e-mail as a main infection vector. This tactic is one that malware experts also have verified for the Onion Ransomware's campaigns.

A typical attack initiates itself through fraudulent e-mail messages crafted especially for the targeted machine. A fake invoice or similar message will instruct the reader to open a file attachment, which usually obfuscates itself with an archive (ZIP, for example). Opening the file launches a Trojan that installs the Onion Ransomware, which proceeds to encrypt the files on your machine.

The Onion Ransomware normally targets files according to type, with an emphasis on image files, documents and Microsoft Office formats. The files in question are forced through an encryption process, making them unreadable. The Onion Ransomware also may modify the file names with identifying tags, such as inserting the prefix 'MW_' or 'KK_' to them.

Finally, the Onion Ransomware drops ransom instructions on your hard drive that demand Bitcoin payments in exchange for a file decryption key.

Getting the Sting of the Onion Ransomware out of Your Eyes

Current ransom demands from the Onion Ransomware may equate to almost one thousand USD in value and provide no certainty of delivering the promised decryption key. However, malware researchers can endorse using routine file backups, via cloud servers or removable hard drives, for avoiding any permanent data loss from the Onion Ransomware's attacks. The Onion Ransomware has no additional attacks against the infected PC, although additional threats related to its campaign may offer other safety concerns.

Developments in the Onion Ransomware continue offering new features and modifications to this threat in 2015, largely focused on the CTB-Locker (Curve Tor Bitcoin) variant. Individual versions of the Onion Ransomware may offer slightly different behaviors, such as providing 'trial' decryption features for a set number of files. However, these changes don't change malware researchers' advice when dealing with this threat: victims should uninstall the Onion Ransomware with tried and tested anti-malware solutions, at all times.

As with most file encryptors, the difficulty in decrypting files affected by the Onion Ransomware continues to emphasize the need to exercise file backup strategies and preventative anti-malware tactics.

Use SpyHunter to Detect and Remove PC Threats

If you are concerned that malware or PC threats similar to Onion Ransomware may have infected your computer, we recommend you start an in-depth system scan with SpyHunter. SpyHunter is an advanced malware protection and remediation application that offers subscribers a comprehensive method for protecting PCs from malware, in addition to providing one-on-one technical support service.

Download SpyHunter's Malware Scanner

Note: SpyHunter's free version is only for malware detection. If SpyHunter detects malware on your PC, you will need to purchase SpyHunter's malware tool to remove the malware threats. Learn more on SpyHunter. If you would like to uninstall SpyHunter for any reason, please follow these uninstall instructions. To learn more about our policies and practices, visit our EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria.

Why can't I open any program including SpyHunter? You may have a malware file running in memory that kills any programs that you try to launch on your PC. Tip: Download SpyHunter from a clean computer, copy it to a USB thumb drive, DVD or CD, then install it on the infected PC and run SpyHunter's malware scanner.

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