This year, ransomware is still considered one of the top cybersecurity threats. Although professionals and cybersecurity experts have been pushing not to give in to hackers’ demands, many individuals easily get convinced to pay ransoms. As a result, cybercriminals are encouraged to repeat their fraudulent acts.
One popular ransomware today is the so-called Pezi ransomware. What is it? How do you remove it? Can you recover the files that the ransomware has encrypted? In this article, we aim to answer all these questions.
About Pezi Ransomware
Pezi is similar to other ransomware variants like Koti and Covm. It encrypts all the common file types you know, causing victims not to be able to open their own files and photos.
So, what does Pezi ransomware do? Once the ransomware has infiltrated your device, it adds the “.pezi” extensions to the files it sees. For instance, if you have a “photo.jpg” file saved on your desktop, it will be changed to photo.jpg.pezi. The moment the encryption process is completed, Pezi will then generate a “_readme.txt” file that contains the instructions on how to get the decryption key.
According to experts, the cryptography algorithm that this ransomware uses is AES-256. This means, once your files get encrypted, the decryption key will be completely unique and won’t have any copies. To make matters worse, it will be impossible to retrieve the file without that decryption key.
For you to have access to the decryption key, the attackers will ask you to pay $980 via fraudulent email addresses or through Telegram.
How Did Your Device Get Infected?
There are many ways that the Pezi ransomware has infiltrated your system. But the common methods that cybercriminals use are dubious links, illegal peer-to-peer downloads, free hosting websites, and freeware.
To avoid the installation of this ransomware into your device, there are a few things that you can do. First, make sure to always opt for the custom installation option to know what other programs come bundled with your download. Next, if you receive an email from an unknown sender containing a suspicious link, do not click on it. There is a chance that you will be redirected to spam websites. Most importantly, ensure that your antivirus software program is always up to date.
How to Remove Pezi Ransomware
Once you suspect that the Pezi ransomware has successfully infiltrated your system, take action. Follow these Pezi ransomware removal instructions we have prepared for you.
Method 1: Run a reputable anti-malware software program
For this Pezi removal method, you will need a trusted anti-malware software program that has the capability to get rid of different types of malicious entities that common security tools usually miss. It would be great to choose a premium tool as it comes packed with features.
Once you have one installed, run a quick system scan and restart your PC. If the tool has detected threats, you have the option to fix them or get rid of them.
Method 2: Use System Restore
If the Pezi ransomware is keeping you from running applications and programs, then you can use the System Restore utility of your Windows device to restore your system to a time before the infection occurred. Don’t worry because this method won’t affect your personal files. It will only revert your programs and system files to a state when they were still working.
To begin the system restoration process, follow these steps:
- Shut down your PC.
- Restart your device by pressing the Power button and holding the Shift key.
- Your device should reboot and display the Recovery Options screen.
- Go to Troubleshoot and select Advanced Options.
- Click System Restore and choose a restore point when your PC was still working fine.
- Follow the on-screen prompts.
- Restart your PC.
No matter how tempting it is to pay the ransom amount, do not consider doing so. You will only be encouraging cybercriminals to continue what they’re doing. And at the end of the day, the chances of getting the decryption key is close to none. So, before your device even gets infected, take action. Be mindful of what you do online and think before you click.
Do you have other tips on how to get rid of the Pezi ransomware? Let us know below!