Charlie Ransomware is a dangerous file-encrypting malware infection. It secretly attack the targeted PC and lock all the files to demand ransom money from users to unlock them. It uses a very powerful encryption algorithm to encode your files and it cannot be deciphered without the decryption key.
During the encryption phase, It renames files on your PC by adding cybercriminals’ email address, victim’s ID, and “.!Charlie” extension to original file names. For example, a file with original name “1.jpg” would appear as “1.jpg.[charlieAdmin@mail2tor.com]ID=EAAD3F.!Charlie” after the encryption process.
A ransom note named as “!README!.hta” containing ransom demand and payment instructions is also dropped into all the compromised folders. If you want to get rid of this infection and recover your files then read this guide.
What is .Charlie File Virus
.Charlie Ransomware is a data locker malware that encrypts all digital files on a compromised PC. It only converts files into inaccessible format then demands extortion money to restore files. This dubious threat is blackmailing malware that prevents users from accessing their personal files and forces them to pay money to reverse the encryption. It is able to attack all versions of Windows computers without the permission of the user. Upon successful intrusion, the .Charlie virus will scan the entire computer for files. Then it encrypts all the files on that PC which normally include but not limited to video, audio, images, text documents, backup, archives, and so on.
Once done with the encryption method, .Charlie File Virus will leave a ransom note on the infected PC to inform victims about the attack. That note will contain all the information about this dubious malware and the ransom demand. The message on that note clearly states that the only way to recover encrypted files is by purchasing the decryption key. Although this .Charlie Ransomware claims to restore your files after paying the money, it is only a trick. Hackers are only intended in making illegal profits by cheating innocent victims.
What happened to your files
The ransomware infection has become a new reality these days. This dirty little malware can easily target your system and you won’t even know it. It will too late when you will ever realize that your computer is infected and you cannot access your files anymore. There are so many ways through which your PC can get infected by .Charlie Virus File and you will only get to know about it when all is lost. This virus uses a very powerful military-grade cipher which is impossible to break without knowing the private key. That key is surely unique for every other computer and stored at a remote location, so there is no way to find it.
Once infecting your computer, .Charlie Virus will change all your files and you will lose access to your private information. It adds its own extension to mark files as locked, and you will need the decryption key to unlock such files and that you can only get from hackers for a price. This is illegal and sure very painful for the victim’s but cybercriminals are making good money out of it. Hackers don’t give you so much time to look for help, they also try to discourage you by threatening to delete your file completely.
Charlie Ransomware: Threat Analysis
Common ways of Ransomware Spreading
There are various ways through which malware like .Charlie file virus infects your system. One of them is by opening spam emails and attachments without scanning for viruses first. Cybercriminals often send fake emails pretending to be some genuine company or service provider. Users don’t give a second thought before opening such emails and malware slip into the computer secretly. One thing you should know that all digital files like images, documents, pdf, .exe, etc. can carry infection.
.Charlie Virus can also contaminate your computer when you click on misleading pop-up ads and banners that appear on your screen while browsing the Internet. These advertisements mostly redirect your browser to suspicious websites that often host malicious codes which can trigger the automatic download of malware on your PC. Avoid browsing porn or torrent sites and downloading pirated software. These are also very commonly used by hackers to spread threats like .Charlie virus. We have created a list of safe practices that can help you protect your PC from further malware intrusion. Be sure to check those precautionary measures at the end of this article.
NEVER Pay Ransom Money
As I have already mentioned, do not pay ransom money to hackers. They are not intended to restore your files. No matter how tempted you are, first, you need to think it through. You don’t know hackers, payment is in BitCoin which cannot be traced, and after getting the money they don’t have any reason to decrypt your files. The only leverage they have on you is your files.Ransom Note (“!README!.hta”) Contains Following Text Message:
All your files have been encrypted! All your files have been encrypted due to a security problem with your PC. If you want to restore them, please send an email to charlieAdmin@mail2tor.com The subject of your email should be: - if you didn't get any response you can send an email to charlieSuport@tutanota.com You have to pay for decryption in Bitcoin. The price depends on how fast you contact us. After payment we will send you the decryption tool. How can you trust us to decrypt your files? Before paying you can send us up to 3 files for free decryption. The total size of files must be less than 2Mb (non archived), and files should not contain valuable information. (databases,backups, large excel sheets, etc.) How to obtain Bitcoins The easiest way to buy bitcoins is LocalBitcoins site. You have to register, click 'Buy bitcoins', and select the seller by payment method and price. hxxps://localbitcoins.com/buy_bitcoins Also you can find other places to buy Bitcoins and beginners guide here: hxxp://www.coindesk.com/information/how-can-i-buy-bitcoins/ Attention! Do not rename encrypted files. Do not try to decrypt your data using third party software, it may cause permanent data loss. Decryption of your files with the help of third parties may cause increased price (they add their fee to our) or you can become a victim of a scam.
Once you pay, creators of .Charlie File Virus can leave you hanging. It’s better to use the backup to restore your files. If by any unfortunate reason you don’t have a backup or your backup files are also encrypted then still do not pay extortion. If you pay the ransom money to cybercriminals, there is no guarantee your files will get restored.
What to do after .Charlie Virus infection
We strongly suggest you try to remove this virus. There is no way you can hope for a happy ending after paying money to hackers. If they give you a decryption key, then still virus is on your PC. It is highly possible that sometime later it will encrypt your files again using some other extension. So it is important that you use this removal guide to completely remove the .Charlie File Virus from your computer. The Anti-malware tool suggested on this site can help you scan your PC for hidden threats and remove them all at once. You can alter restore your files through any Data Recovery Software.
How To Remove Charlie Virus
Charlie File Virus is a harmful and notorious threat. It will keep creating new problems in your PC, so it very important to delete this malware permanently. When this kind of malware invades your system, it may also bring other threats to the victimized system. It can do major damage to your computer in a very quick time. It may have already spread its copies at different locations on your system. Files related to this infection can have different names, so it will make it harder to detect.
We are going to discuss two possible ways to remove Charlie Virus infection 1. Automatic Removal, 2. Manual Removal method. It’s better to have a complete diagnosis on the infected PC so that all the potential infections can easily be found and removed at once. You must clean your system properly and remove all the core files related to Charlie Ransomware. The Automatic Removal process is fast, precise, and error free whereas the Manual Removal process is time-consuming and a slight mistake can corrupt the entire operating system. We advised you to take the help of both methods to completely eliminate the virus from your PC.
Automatic Charlie Removal Guide
As you already know that, Charlie Virus is a notorious and cunning malware that is not hard to remove easily by any user through manual means. This virus can keep coming back on the infected computer through files and shortcuts or settings that it has already created on your machine. Removing all those at once is the only way to get rid of this infection and stop it from getting on your system ever again.
So the best way to remove Charlie effectively is to use a powerful Automatic Removal Tool and save your time and efforts. This software is a well-trusted and very powerful anti-malware program that can detect all hidden threats like Trojan, Ransomware, Worms, Spyware, Rootkits, and many others. It also provides 24X7 customer support and one-on-one Spyware HelpDesk support for Custom Malware removal. Advanced System Guard feature detects and removes threats in real-time. It has a very User-Friendly Interface and regular Malware updates make it most effective against the latest malware attacks.
How SpyHunter 5 Anti-Malware Works
- First, you need to click on the below download button to get the software.
- Then double-click on the installer you downloaded to install the program.
- Launch Anti-Malware application and Start Scan Now of your PC.
- The software will scan your PC for all hidden threats and viruses on your system.
- Click on the Next button to see results and delete Charlie and other threats.
How To Recover Your Encrypted Files
Now all your files got encrypted by the .Charlie Virus then you need to recover your data without paying ransom money to hackers. If your files are important then you must have created a backup and you can use that backup to recover your files. If you don’t have a backup or this virus has encrypted your backup files, then you are left to seek professional help.
We recommend you use powerful data recovery software to restore your files encrypted .Charlie File Virus. It is a risk-free and smart way. You can just download the free version and scan your PC for files. There is a high probability that it can recover most of your files in a fraction of the amount that hackers are demanding. It is also needless to say that paying hackers will only motivate hackers to carry out more attacks.
- First, you need to download Data Recovery software on your PC.
- Install the program, launch it then select the Data type to recover, and click the Next button.
- Select the location from where you want to recover data and click the Scan button.
- After the scan, software will list all files, select them and click the Recover button.
Manual Charlie Removal Guide
Start PC in safe mode with networking
- Press Windows Key + R buttons together on the keyboard.
- Type msconfig in the Run Box then click the OK button.
- Click on the Boot tab then the System configuration window will appear.
- Choose Safe Boot, check the network box, Click Apply, and press the OK button.
Kill Malicious Process From Task Manager
- Press Windows Key + R buttons together on the keyboard.
- Type taskmgr in Run Box and then click the OK button.
- Find Charlie related or any malicious process.
- Now right-click on it then click End process.
How To Uninstall Charlie from Windows PC
- First of all Press Windows Key + R buttons together.
- Type appwiz.cpl in the Run box and then click the OK button.
- Now Programs and Features windows will appear on the screen.
- Find and remove all Charlie related or malicious programs.
Remove Virus related Windows Registry entries
- Press Windows Key + R buttons together on the keyboard.
- Type regedit in Run Box and then click the OK button.
- Registry Editor will open, then press CTRL +F buttons together.
- Now type Charlie and then click on Find Next button.
- Find all the related entries and delete them one by one
Delete Virus related files from your PCWhen a threat gets on to a PC, it most likely creates some files at different locations on the system. These files are used to perform a specific action and also help malware in getting back to the computer once it’s removed. So you just need to find also delete all those files associated with this .Charlie File Virus. For that follow the below instruction :
- Press Windows Key + R buttons together on the keyboard
- Type each of the following in Run Box and press the OK button
Remove Charlie Virus via system restore
- Press Windows Key + R buttons together on the keyboard.
- Type cmd in Run Box and then click the OK button.
- Type cd restore and press Enter, then type rstrui.exe and press Enter.
- When the System Restore window opens on your computer screen click the Next button, then choose a System Restore point you have created in the past and click the Next button.
- Finally, click on the Yes button to start the system restoration process.
Note: This will only work if you have a restore point set on your PC or it will give an error message. Restoring the computer to a previous version may or may not remove .Charlie File Virus. Most of the time, viruses just delete all the restore points. If this trick does not work for you then don’t get disappointed.
After restoring your computer, we recommend you run a thorough scan of the PC using a Powerful Anti-Malware program to detect and remove any hidden threats. In most cases, viruses may spread through any files outside of the C drive because system restoring only affect the C drive. There may be some Virus related files hiding your PC, and it never hurts to double-check.
Sometimes, system restore doesn’t work or viruses can just remove the restore points. As such you will probably have no other choice than to choose the Automatic Removal Process. It is the best and error-free method to find and remove threats from your computer. Additionally, you should also check some important malware prevention tips provided here in this guide to avoid similar virus attacks in the future.
Remove Charlie Virus From MacOSIf you are a mac user, and your machine got infected by this nasty file-encrypting malware then you need to remove it as soon as possible. Although Mac systems are quite safe they still do get infected. So you can delete this infection using the below steps:
Stop Malicious Program From Activity Monitor
- First, you need to open Utilities folder on your Mac system.
- Find the Activity Monitor icon and double-click on it to open it.
- Find Charlie related process, click the cross button from the upper left side corner to end task.
- A pop-up dialogue box will appear on the screen, click on the Force Quit button.
Remove Virus From Application Folder
- First, go to the Dock option (bottom of your screen) then click on Finder App.
- Now you have to open the Applications Folders to see all the programs.
- Find Charlie or any other unwanted program then move it to Trash.
Remove Charlie Virus Related Files From MacWhen any program is installed on your Mac, it creates several files on your system that support the functioning of that application. If you need to remove any virus from your Mac, then you need to delete all related files completely. These files could be found at :
- Application Support
- First of all press the Command+Shift+G buttons together on your keyboard.
- Now you can see Go To Folder option on your Mac screen.
- Type in /Library/LaunchAgents in the text field and click on Go button.
- Find and remove any Charlie Virus related or malicious file.
Attention: If you are not tech-savvy, then it could be quite difficult to remove Charlie File Virus manually from your Mac. The best way is to download SpyHunter Mac Anti-Malware and see if it can detect all hidden threats and viruses on your computer. It’s really super easy and you should give it a try.
How SpyHunter Mac Anti-Malware Works
- First, download the SpyHunter for Mac by clicking on the below button.
- Now go to the Download Folder from the Docs and Install the SpyHunter Anti-Malware For Mac.
- Launch the Program, and click on Start Scan Now button.
- Software will start running a a full scan of your mac instantly to look for any malware, virus, threats, malicious programs or security risk and so on.
- Finally you will see a list of malwares detected on your mac, now click on Next button to start the removal process.
Tips To Prevent .Charlie Virus in Future
- Use a good anti-virus, be it a free version but don’t use cracked security programs.
- Make sure that your Windows firewall is active, so it can block upcoming threats.
- Keep your Windows/Mac OS and other programs updated to avoid vulnerabilities.
- Download updates only from official websites, don’t use suspicious sites.
- Never download and install pirated software, games, or illegal patches on your PC.
- Do not open spam emails from an unknown sender and scan all attachments before opening.
- Never download freeware third-party programs from unreliable sources or websites.
- Avoid connecting your PC to unsafe public Wi-Fi to protect your privacy.
- You can also use a VPN to spoof your connection and avoid malicious sites.
- Create a system restore point on your system for security purposes.
- Keep backup of all your important files to avoid data loss.
Report cyber attack to Authorities
If you are also a Victim of Charlie virus then you should report this cybercrime incident to legal authorities in your county. Here is the list of some of the official government websites for reporting fraud and scam activities:
- United States – Guard Online
- Australia – SCAMwatch
- United Kingdom – Action Fraud
- New Zealand – Consumer Affairs Scams
- Canada – Canadian Anti-Fraud
- Ireland – An Garda Síochána
- India – National Cybercrime Reporting Portal
You can also search to find the Internet Crime Authority in your country. Meanwhile, it will not help you remove or restore your files in any way but it’s merely information to authorities. Once you register your complaint, authorities might look into and take preventive measures to stop further attacks. However, don’t get lured by third-party criminal reporting sites or fake technical support websites. They are more like to cheat you instead of helping you.