How to remove Cuag ransomware
Cuag ransomware is a generic file-encrypting malware infection from the Djvu/STOP ransomware family. It’s a very serious threat because it encrypts files, and it’s not always possible to recover them. The cybercriminals operating this ransomware release new file-encrypting malware on a regular basis, and Cuag ransomware is one of the more recent versions to come from Djvu. Ransomware usually adds file extensions to encrypted files and they help users identify which ransomware they are dealing with. This ransomware adds .cuag, hence why it’s known as Cuag ransomware. Unfortunately, unless you have copies of them in backup, getting files back will be difficult.
The cybercrime gang responsible for Cuag ransomware is notorious for releasing ransomware on a regular basis. Cuag ransomware is one of the more recent releases, and other versions include Bbbw, Maiv, Qqqe, and Yoqs. They are all more or less identical to one another but users can identify them by the extensions they add to encrypted files. This one adds .cuag. For example, an encrypted text.txt file would become text.txt.cuag. Most of your personal files will have this extension, including photos, videos, documents, images, etc. Unfortunately, once they’ve been encrypted, you will not be able to open them, unless you first run them through a decryptor. But acquiring a decryptor will be no easy task because only the cybercriminals operating this ransomware have it. They will try to sell it to you for $980, though paying the ransom comes with risks.
When the ransomware is done encrypting your files, it will drop a _readme.txt ransom note in all folders that contain encrypted files. The note is a generic block of text that’s the same in all other notes dropped by this ransomware. It contains information about the decryptor, mostly how to buy it. The malware operators are selling the decryptor for $980. The note also mentions that users who contact them within the first 72 hours will receive a 50% discount. Victims can also supposedly send 1 file to be decrypted for free, provided it does not contain any important information. Keep in mind that you are dealing with cyber criminals so you should be skeptical of all of their claims, including that they will send you the decryptor. There’s nothing really stopping them from simply taking the money and not sending anything in return. Unfortunately, it has happened to users in the past. While we strongly advise against paying the ransom, it is your decision to make. However, you need to be aware of the risks that come with dealing with cybercriminals.
One of the most effective ways of fighting ransomware is having copies of files in a backup. If you have a backup, you will have no trouble recovering files. However, you do need to be careful to fully delete Cuag ransomware from the computer. We recommend using anti-malware software because if you try to remove Cuag ransomware manually, you may cause additional damage. And if the ransomware is still present when you connect to your backup, your backed-up files would become encrypted as well. And if that happens, your files may be lost for good.
If you have no copies of your encrypted files, your only option may be to wait for a free Cuag ransomware decryptor. However, there are no guarantees that a free decryptor will actually be released. The majority of ransomware from this family uses online keys to encrypt files which means that keys are unique to each user. Unless those keys are released, it’s unlikely that a free Cuag ransomware decryptor will become available. You can find a free Djvu/STOP decryptor by Emsisoft but it will not work on ransomware that uses online keys for file encryption. Nonetheless, if you are out of options, back up the encrypted files and check NoMoreRansom from time to time for a decryptor.
How is ransomware distributed?
It’s very easy to pick up malware infections, which is why it’s so important that users have good online habits. Users who aren’t careful online are at a much higher risk of picking up an infection. Bad habits include opening unsolicited email attachments, clicking on ads while browsing unsafe sites, pirating copyrighted content via torrents, etc. Developing better habits can help avoid a lot of malware.
It’s not a secret that torrents are a great way to pick up malware. There are a lot of unsafe, poorly regulated torrent websites where malicious actors upload loads of malware. It’s very common to find malware in torrents for popular movies, TV series, software, video games, etc. For users who do not know the signs of malware, it’s very easy to get infected. Furthermore, downloading copyrighted content via torrents for free is essentially stealing.
Malspam, or malicious spam, is another common way users pick up malware. It’s quite a low-effort method for cybercriminals. They purchase email addresses from hacker forums, write a semi-convincing email, attach a malicious file, and send it. When users open the file, their computers become infected. Fortunately, it’s very easy to identify malicious emails as long users know what to look for. The most obvious sign is grammar/spelling mistakes. Senders often pretend to be from legitimate companies so the mistakes are very glaring. Other signs include random-looking email addresses and users addressed with generic terms like User, Member, Customer, etc. When users get an email from a company whose services they use, they will always be addressed by their name. Otherwise, it would look unprofessional.
In rare cases, malicious emails may be more sophisticated, especially if they target someone specific. Thus, it’s recommended to always scan unsolicited email attachments with anti-virus software or VirusTotal before opening them.
Cuag ransomware removal
Ransomware is a very serious malware infection so it’s not recommended to try to remove Cuag ransomware manually. You could accidentally cause additional damage or not get rid of it fully. If the ransomware is still present when you connect to your backup, your backed-up files would become encrypted as well. So we strongly recommend using anti-malware software to delete Cuag ransomware. Once the ransomware is gone, you can safely connect to your backup.
WiperSoft.com is not sponsored, affiliated, linked to or owned by malware developers or distributors that are referred to in this article. The article does NOT endorse or promote malicious programs. The intention behind it is to present useful information that will help users to detect and eliminate malware from their computer by using WiperSoft and/or the manual removal guide.
The article should only be used for educational purposes. If you follow the instructions provided in the article, you agree to be bound by this disclaimer. We do not guarantee that the article will aid you in completely removing the malware from your PC. Malicious programs are constantly developing, which is why it is not always easy or possible to clean the computer by using only the manual removal guide.