Infected with CryptoWall? Need to decrypt your files?

What is CryptoWall

In this article we will guide you through the removal and decryption process. First, let’s try to understand what is CryptoWall. CryptoWall is a malware program, created by cyber criminals, that encrypts files on user’s computer and offers a decryption in exchange of payment. It is well known that CryptoWall can infect any operating system version and revision (Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8). Keeping in mind that infection itself is not very hard to remove, decryption of files, on the other hand affected by this malicious program is impossible without paying the ransom. This is why it would be a good practice to always keep a recent backup of your files.

cryptowall virus

How CryptoWall infected your PC

The CryptoWall ransomware virus might infect your operating system via suspicious websites or reliable websites, which are compromised by cyber criminals, infected email messages or fake downloads. After successful infection, this malicious program encrypts files stored on your computer and demands payment to decrypt them. Keep in mind that paying the ransom as demanded by this ransomware is the same as sending your money to cyber criminals and supporting their criminal goals. And what is more important there is NO guarantee that your files will ever be decrypted. Therefore, the ideal solution is to remove this ransomware virus and then restore your data from a backup. To avoid computer infection with ransomware virus such as this, stay on guard when opening email messages since cyber criminals use catchy titles to trick into opening infected email attachment. Always watch link address when browsing internet. And, of course, watch, what you are downloading from the internet or P2P network. Cyber criminals can mask their ransomware viruses with legitimate downloads (for example flash player update).

What to do if you are infected with CryptoWall virus?

First of all don’t panic. Follow these easy steps below.

1. Start your computer in Safe Mode with networking. To do that, restart your computer, before your system starts hit F8 several times. This will stop system from loading and will show Advanced boot options screen. Choose Safe mode with networking option from the options list using up and down arrows on your keyboard and hit Enter.
2. Log in to the system infected with the CryptoWall virus. Launch your Internet browser and download a reliable anti-malware program and start a full system scan. Once the scan is complete, review scan results and remove all entries detected.

Recommended Solution:

Norton is a powerful removal tool. It can remove all instances of newest viruses, similar to CryptoWall – files, folders, registry keys.


Download Norton*Trial version of Norton provides detection of computer viruses for FREE. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Norton.

Step 2: Remove following files and folders of CryptoWall:

Remove following registry entries:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\{machine id}\{random 17 chars}\

Remove following files:


How to decrypt files infected by CryptoWall (.aaa files)?

Use automated decryption tools

There is ransomware decryptor from Kaspersky that may decrypt .aaa files decryption. It is free and may help you restore files encrypted by CryptoWall. Download it from this page:

Download Kaspersky RannohDecryptor

There is currently no automated decryption tool for CryptoWall 3.0 files, but that doesn’t mean that you need to pay the ransom. We track the topic and will add any new decryption tool available in this part of the article. Now you can try to use manual methods to restore and decrypt .aaa, .ttt, .xxx, .micro files.

Decrypt .aaa files manually

Restore the system using System Restore

system restore

Although, latest versions of CryptoWall remove system restore files, this method may help you partially restore your files. Give it a try and use standard System Restore to revive your data.

  1. Initiate the search for ‘system restore
  2. Click on the result
  3. Choose the date before the infection appearance
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions

Roll the files back to the previous version

Previous versions can be copies of files and folders created by Windows Backup (if it is active) or copies of files and folders created by System Restore. You can use this feature to restore files and folders that you accidentally modified or deleted, or that were damaged (in our case – encrypted by CryptoWall). This feature is available in Windows 7 and later versions.

windows previous versions

  1. Right-click the file and choose Properties
  2. Open the Previous Version tab
  3. Select the latest version and click Copy
  4. Click Restore

Restore .aaa files using shadow copies

shadow explorer gui

  1. Download and run Shadow Explorer.
  2. Select the drive and folder where your files are located and date that you want to restore them from.
  3. Right-click on folder you want to restore and select Export.
  4. Once the scanning process is done, click Recover to restore your files.

Protect your computer from ransomware

hitmanpro alert with cryptoguard

Most modern antiviruses can protect your PC from ransomware and crypto-trojans, but thousands of people still get infected. There are several programs that use different approach t protect from ransomware and lockers. One of the best is HitmanPro.Alert with CryptoGuard. You may already know HitmanPro as famous cloud-based anti-malware scanner. Check out ultimate active protection software from SurfRight.

Download HitmanPro.Alert with CryptoGuard

Information provided by: Alexey Abalmasov

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