WantMoney Ransomware

WantMoney Ransomware Description

The WantMoney Ransomware is a Trojan that imitates the Petya Ransomware's ransoming message while also blocking your digital media. Besides being unable to open anything that the threat encrypts, the victims also may see changes to their desktop's wallpaper or experience sudden pop-up alerts. Free decryption programs sometimes may recover the content that a Trojan locks, but PC users can guarantee the best defense with professional anti-malware products that remove the WantMoney Ransomware expediently and backups saved on other devices.

An Ugly Expression for Your Desktop to Wear

Not everyone in the BlackHat industry has access to the Petya Ransomware, but threat actors using Ransomware-as-a-Service, independently-made Trojans, and even variants free software like Hidden Tear are imitating its payload profitably. These copycats aren't necessarily significantly less threatening to users who don't back up their data, since they may, like the WantMoney Ransomware, still be just as capable of damaging files by enciphering them. Its randomly-named executables are compromising PCs by methods not yet known by malware experts, although the scope of the WantMoney Ransomware's campaign seems to be limited to China.

The WantMoney Ransomware is using an AES cipher for its encryption feature, which sorts through the files on an infected system and blocks different media types, including videos, archives, text documents, spreadsheets or music. The Trojan also delivers ransoming demands for selling its file-unlocking service afterward through no fewer than three, distinct methods:

  • The most visually-identifying note hijacks the desktop's wallpaper and replaces it with a BMP that shows an ASCII skull (similar to the Hidden Tear Trojan, the Cryp70n1c Ransomware), a red background that imitates the Petya Ransomware's lock-screen function, and messages related to paying Bitcoin ransoms in both Chinese and English text.
  • The WantMoney Ransomware also duplicates its background text in a second, Notepad file, which may be a redundancy measure, in case the victim can't read the background, or if the hijacking feature fails.
  • A final, backup ransom-displaying message launches through a Windows message box-based pop-up automatically. Once again, it provides no new information that the user can't read in any of the first two notes

The threat actors sell their decryption key for one-tenth of a Bitcoin or just over one thousand USD. As usual, there are no guarantees that they'll reciprocate their side of the transaction, and malware experts recommend testing the possible compatibility with your locked files versus all appropriate, free decryption programs beforehand.

Wanting Freedom from Money-Snatching Trojans

Besides the Trojan's using a randomly-generated name, it also is trying to conceal its identity from security software by using a UPX-based executable packer. Despite that precaution, most updated anti-malware programs can identify the WantMoney Ransomware on sight, which should prevent it from being able to encrypt any of your media. E-mail is a significant majority of the infection strategies in use with file-locking threats, but cybercrooks also may compromise a network with brute-force utilities or distribute the Trojan's installer in torrents or other, piracy-related resources.

Backups are a sure way of recovering any content without lasting harm to your PC's documents, pictures, and other content that most often suffer attacks from threats like the WantMoney Ransomware. Users who don't have their anti-malware programs remove the WantMoney Ransomware in time to interrupt its file-locking feature also may wish to investigate free decryption applications available through various entities in the AV sector. However, decryption never is a guarantee, even if you choose to pay the Bitcoin ransom.

Right now, the WantMoney Ransomware aims at profiting from Chinese users and may customize its infection model correspondingly. The rest of the world has similar threats to worry about thanks to the easy availability of Trojans with data-enciphering attacks, whether they're actual remnants of the Petya Ransomware or just copycats of the family.

Use SpyHunter to Detect and Remove PC Threats

If you are concerned that malware or PC threats similar to WantMoney 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.

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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.

Posted: December 4, 2017
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