Phoenix Ransomware

Posted: December 7, 2016
Threat Metric
Threat Level: 8/10
Infected PCs 77

Phoenix Ransomware Description

The Phoenix Ransomware is a variant of the RIP Ransomware, a Hidden Tear-based threat that locks your files and creates ransoming messages for selling its decryption solution. The Trojan targets specific directories and formats of content for locking, which may cause damage that the victim can't reverse. Protecting your PC with anti-malware tools capable of removing the Phoenix Ransomware and backups for recovering content at no charge are the two most highly-recommended tactics against this threat.

More Problems Crawling out of the Ashes of Hidden Tear

It's no surprise to anyone who's followed the trends of the threat industry to find that free resources of programming code make repeated appearances in entirely separate campaigns. The 'freeware' aspect of such attacks can lend themselves to unpredictable delivery methods or even confuse branding between two related threats, such as the Phoenix Ransomware and the RIP Ransomware. Both these Trojans use Hidden Tear as the basis of their attacks, although their ransom notes show the footprints of different threat actors.

Although the Phoenix Ransomware has yet to see deployment targeting files against live targets, early versions of this threat include full file-encrypting features that can isolate data based on its location and format. Default Phoenix Ransomware settings will block content including PNG images, TXT text documents, and SQL databases, in addition to roughly a dozen additional extensions. Malware experts also saw the Phoenix Ransomware appending the extension '.R.i.P' to each name, creating potential obfuscation between it and the RIP Ransomware.

The Phoenix Ransomware also creates Notepad-based ransom notes for offering its decryption services, although victims must transfer a 0.2 Bitcoin payment before the con artist assists them. Like similar threats, the use of cryptocurrency prevents you from recalling the money, if the con artist fails to comply, as well as protecting the threat actor's identity.

Grounding a Trojan Just Beginning to Spread Its Wings

No evidence of the Phoenix Ransomware being in deployment has surfaced, but malware researchers find this threat to be equally as threatening to your saved content as other, live versions of Hidden Tear Trojans. The Trojan is configurable for encoding different formats of files easily, as well as different directories. Free decryption solutions viable against past versions of Hidden Tear may or may not be able to help victims recover by decoding the content that the Phoenix Ransomware attacks.

Threat actors often depend on below-standard security practices from their victims for distributing threats like the Phoenix Ransomware. Scanning files from potentially threatening sources, such as unconfirmed e-mail senders, can identify common Trojan installers like Zlob. Active anti-malware products also may block and delete the Phoenix Ransomware before it finishes encrypting the contents of your computer.

Sadly, industriousness on the part of con artists calls for matching vigilance from any law-abiding PC user, who may be burned by new threats like the Phoenix Ransomware, if they let their security solutions become out-of-date sufficiently.

Use SpyHunter to Detect and Remove PC Threats

If you are concerned that malware or PC threats similar to Phoenix 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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