ProLock Virus

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ProLock

ProLock is a new and advanced version of the Ransomware virus category – a type of malware known for blocking important user files. ProLock employs a complex encryption algorithm through which it is able to make all targeted files inaccessible via conventional means.

ProLock Virus

The ProLock virus will encrypt your files and leave a message in a [HOW TO RECOVER FILES].txt file.

The goal of this virus isn’t to harm the files or to steal them but to keep them locked until the user gives in to the hacker’s demands. Those demands, of course, are the payment of a certain amount of money to the criminals. According to a note that the Ransomware puts on the Desktop once it completes the encryption, the victim is supposed to send a certain amount of money in Bitcoins to the hackers’ online wallet. If the payment is made, the blackmailers promise to send their victim a unique access key that can be used to make the encrypted files available once again.

The ProLock virus

The ProLock virus is an extortionist type of malware that places the user’s files under lockdown and uses this as blackmailing leverage. The ProLock virus informs the user that an access key would be provided to them if the ransom is paid.

Since the virus doesn’t damage the computer and doesn’t conduct any other harmful activities, if you can afford to lose the encrypted files because they aren’t of any significant importance to you, the attack of this malware shouldn’t be a particularly serious issue. As far as the virus itself is concerned, it can be removed from the computer to prevent more unwanted encryption in the future. We will even give you a guide on how to do that. However, since the removal of the infection doesn’t automatically make the encrypted files accessible again if any of those files are important to you and you don’t have backups of them from where you can restore them, then you will need to take a careful look at your options and decide what to do next in order to minimize the harm caused by this malware.

The ProLock file decryption

The ProLock file decryption is the main method that is supposed to release your encrypted files. The ProLock file decryption, however, requires a unique key generated by the virus and that key is kept by the hackers, who want a ransom for it.

Of course, you pay the ransom, it is indeed possible that you will get that key and be able to restore your files. However, it is just as possible that the criminals trick you and only take the money without giving you the needed means to recover your data.

On the flip side, there may be other methods of restoring your files that do not require you to contact the hackers or to send them your money. Some of these alternatives will be explored in the second part of our removal guide. However, you will first need to ensure that the ProLock malware is removed from your computer so as to prevent the future encryption of any new files or of any files you may manage to recover. Also, bear in mind that the alternatives aren’t guaranteed to work in all cases. Nevertheless, it is still preferable to try them first, before you decide to try the ransom payment.

SUMMARY:

Name ProLock
Type Ransomware
Danger Level High (Ransomware is by far the worst threat you can encounter)
Symptoms Typically, Ransomware causes the computer to use high amounts of RAM and CPU, which may cause the system to slow down.
Distribution Method Spam messages, pirated content, and misleading online offers and ads are the most common symptoms.
Data Recovery Tool [banner_table_recovery]
Detection Tool

Remove ProLock Ransomware


ProLock Virus

Some of the steps will likely require you to exit the page. Bookmark it for later reference.

Reboot in Safe Mode (use this guide if you don’t know how to do it).

ProLock Virus

WARNING! READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING!

Press CTRL + SHIFT + ESC at the same time and go to the Processes Tab. Try to determine which processes are dangerous. 

ProLock Virus

Right click on each of them and select Open File Location. Then scan the files with our free online virus scanner:

ProLock Virus
Drag and Drop Files Here to Scan
Maximum file size: 128MB.

This scanner is free and will always remain free for our website's users. You can find its full-page version at: https://howtoremove.guide/online-virus-scanner/




Scan Results


Virus Scanner Result
ProLock VirusClamAV
ProLock VirusAVG AV
ProLock VirusMaldet


After you open their folder, end the processes that are infected, then delete their folders. 

Note: If you are sure something is part of the infection – delete it, even if the scanner doesn’t flag it. No anti-virus program can detect all infections.

ProLock Virus

Hold the Start Key and R –  copy + paste the following and click OK:

notepad %windir%/system32/Drivers/etc/hosts

A new file will open. If you are hacked, there will be a bunch of other IPs connected to you at the bottom. Look at the image below:

ProLock Virus

If there are suspicious IPs below “Localhost” – write to us in the comments.

Type msconfig in the search field and hit enter. A window will pop-up:

ProLock Virus

Go in Startup —> Uncheck entries that have “Unknown” as Manufacturer.

  • Please note that ransomware may even include a fake Manufacturer name to its process. Make sure you check out every process here is legitimate.

ProLock Virus

Type Regedit in the windows search field and press EnterOnce inside, press CTRL and F together and type the virus’s Name. 

Search for the ransomware  in your registries and delete the entries. Be extremely careful –  you can damage your system if you delete entries not related to the ransomware.

Type each of the following in the Windows Search Field:

  1. %AppData%
  2. %LocalAppData%
  3. %ProgramData%
  4. %WinDir%
  5. %Temp%

Delete everything in Temp. The rest just check out for anything recently added. Remember to leave us a comment if you run into any trouble!

ProLock Virus 

How to Decrypt ProLock files

We have a comprehensive (and daily updated) guide on how to decrypt your files. Check it out here.

If the guide doesn’t help, download the anti-virus program we recommended or try our free online virus scanner. Also, you can always ask us in the comments for help!

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About the author

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Brandon Skies

Brandon is a researcher and content creator in the fields of cyber-security and virtual privacy. Years of experience enable him to provide readers with important information and adequate solutions for the latest software and malware problems.

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