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Thursday, February 14, 2013

EC3 Europol virus removal tool

EC3 stands for European Cybercrime Center, also referred to as Europol. This is a recently established Police Body of the European Union that is meant to prevent crimes in the cyber space. Needless to mention, this agency is a reputable organization that serves for the benefit of European residents and protects their legal rights. It has recently come to our attention that the logo of EC3 Europol is widely used in the majority of contemporary ransomware lockers that belong to the Urausy malware family.

EC3 Europol organization, of course, has nothing to do with ransomware lockers. The reason why its logo is used by hackers on their lockers is to scare users tremendously, in addition to the faulty accusations of lockers. They tell that users were noticed to perform a lot of illegal activities online. In particular, this includes downloading and distributing illegal copies of audio and video files, as well as software in violation of copyrights. Plus, hackers accuse users of sending massive unsolicited spam to various addressees, visiting the sites of terrorist organizations for the purposes of supporting them, and, finally, watching and distributing a lot of adult sinful content around the world wide web. These faulty accusations are presented as the ones supposedly coming from EC3 Europol. In reality, they’re produced by the pack of cyber frauds who simply want you to pay money in their favor. This money is the very ransom. The fraudsters (depending on the name of the ransomware locker) instructs users to pay the fine (ransom) via Ukash, Paysafecard or GreenDot MoneyPak payment systems. Hopefully, you will never commit such serious mistakes. Instead, what you need to implement immediately is the effective removal of EC3 Europol scam from your computer.

What you first need to do to remove EC3 Europol scam is to ignore its fake accusations and claims. Don’t worry! You haven’t done anything wrong to be worried about. There are ways how to unlock your computer, but this, of course, includes implementing some manual steps. Then, afterwards, you’re free to download and run the security software of your choice to unblock your computer that has been attacked by EC3 Europol virus. We recommend you to try our recommended anti-malware tool – GridinSoft Trojan Killer.

Screenshot of EC3 Europol as used by hackers in ransomware lockers:

Automatic removal solution (recommended):

  1. Go to your friend, relative or anybody else who has computer with Internet connection.
  2. Take your USB flash drive / Memory Stick with you.
  3. Download GridinSoft Trojan Killer installation file from this site and save it to your USB flash drive / Memory Stick.
  4. Get back to your infected PC and insert the USB Drive / Memory Stick into the respective USB slot.
  5. Perform hard reset (press reset button on your computer) if your infected PC has been on with ransomware's background. If not, then simply turn your PC on.
  6. Before the very boot process begins keep repeatedly hitting “F8” button on your keyboard.
  7. In the window that appeared select “Safe mode with command prompt” option and press Enter.
  8. Choose your operating system and user account which was infected with ransomware virus.
  9. In the cmd.exe window type “explorer” and press “Enter” button on your keyboard.
  10. Select “My Computer” and choose your USB flash drive / Memory Stick.
  11. Run the installation file of GridinSoft Trojan Killer. Install the program and run scan with it. (update of the program will not work for “Safe mode with command prompt” option)
  12. When the hijackers are successfully disabled (fixed) by GridinSoft Trojan Killer you may close GridinSoft Trojan Killer application.
  13. In the cmd.exe window type “shutdown /r /t 0” and press “Enter” button on your keyboard.
  14. Upon system reboot your PC will be unlocked and you will be able to use it just as before the infection took pace.
  15. However, it is recommended that you now update GridinSoft Trojan Killer and run the scan with it again to remove the source of the infections causing ransomware to infect your PC.

Automatic removal video:

Ransomware manual removal milestones (optional and might not be effective):

  1. Restart your system into "Safe Mode with Command Prompt". While the PC is booting press the "F8 key" continuously, which should present the "Windows Advanced Options Menu" as presented in the image below. Apply the arrow keys in order to move to "Safe Mode with Command Prompt" and hit Enter key of your keyboard. Login as the same user you were previously logged in under the normal Windows mode.
  2. Once Windows boots successfully, the Windows command prompt would appear as described at the screenshot below. At the command prompt, type-in the word "explorer", and press Enter. Windows Explorer should open. Please do not yet close it. You can minimize it for a while.
  3. Afterwards open the Registry editor by applying the same Windows command prompt. Type-in the word "regedit" and hit Enter button of your keyboard. The Registry Editor should open.
  4. Find the following registry entry: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\ In the right-side panel select the registry entry named Shell. Right click on this registry key and select "Modify" option. Its default value should be "Explorer.exe". However, ransomware did its job, and so after you click "Modify" you would see totally different value of this registry entry.
  5. Copy the location of the modified value of the above-mentioned registry entry to the piece of paper or memorize its location. It shows where exactly the main executable of ransomware is located.
  6. Modify the value of the registry entry back to "explorer.exe" and save the settings of the Registry Editor.
  7. Go to the location indicated in the value of modified registry entry. Remove the malicous file. Use the file location you copied into the piece of paper or otherwise noted in step in previous step. In our case, ransomware's virus file was located and running from the Desktop. There was a file called "contacts.exe", but it may have different (random) name.
  8. Get back to "Normal Mode". In order to reboot your PC, when at the command prompt, type-in the following phrase "shutdown /r /t 0" (without the quotation marks) and hit Enter button.
  9. The virus should be gone. However, in order to clean your PC from other possible virus threats and malware remnants, make sure to download and run GridinSoft Trojan Killer downloadable through the button below.

Manual removal video:

Associated virus files to be removed:


Associated virus registry entries to be removed:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\"Shell" = "[random].exe"

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