Home Guides .adobe ransomware removal and files recovery [Dec 2018 upd.]

.adobe ransomware removal and files recovery [Dec 2018 upd.]

7 min read
A new variant of the Dharma/CrySiS ransomware is out, appending the .adobe extension to encrypted files and dropping FILES ENCRYPTED.txt ransom note.

Ransomware is one of the very few strains of malicious code that causes things to get out of hand completely. As opposed to the overwhelming majority of malware, it targets one’s irreplaceable asset – personal data. Surreptitious infiltration into a computer, a scan for valuable files, implementation of cryptography to lock down all spotted items, and outright ransom demands – all of these are common components of every such attack. The sample, or rather lineage thereof, dubbed Dharma (CrySiS) doesn’t deviate from this incursion chain at all. The only novelty its latest version has introduced comes down to the .adobe extension added to encrypted files, while the ransom note named FILES ENCRYPTED.txt is shared with the previous editions, including the .combo variant.

Encrypted files with the .adobe extension
Encrypted files with the .adobe extension

Having been executed on a computer, the .adobe ransomware traverses all disks reflected in the system structure as separate drive letters. If a removable drive is currently inserted, it is subject to this routine as well. The goal of this scouring is to find all bits and pieces of information that matters to the victim. The file formats Dharma looks for include all types of Office documents, images, videos, and databases, to name a few. Once the scan ends, the cryptographic module of the infection enters the game. It scrambles the located files at a deep level, applying an uncrackable mix of AES and RSA ciphers. This technique causes a denial of access to all of the user’s important data, replacing the file icons with blank ones unidentifiable by the operating system.

The .adobe file virus displays HTA ransom note
The .adobe file virus displays HTA ransom note

Not only can these items no longer be opened or accessed whatsoever, but they also undergo filename changes. The original filenames become concatenated with strings in the following format: id-{victim ID consisting of 8 hexadecimal characters}.[extortionists’ email address].adobe. So far, the victims have reported the following email strings that appear in square brackets: payransom@qq.com, stopencrypt@qq.com and btcdecripter@qq.com. Therefore, a sample file named 1.bmp will become a badly broken entity similar to this: 1.bmp.id-BA2157C1.[payransom@qq.com].adobe.

While the attackers’ contact information embedded right in the filenames is an unambiguous clue on what to do next, the .adobe ransomware gets more obvious with its demands by also leaving ransom notes. Those are two objects – one is an HTA file, and the other is a TXT document. The former, Info.hta, is actually an application triggered automatically whose window title matches the felons’ email address. It blames the unauthorized encryption on a “security problem” with the PC and instructs the user to send an email to the malefactors. The subject field of this message is supposed to include the unique victim ID. The logic of this interaction is to receive a detailed recovery walkthrough. The other edition of the ransom note, FILES ENCRYPTED.txt, contains the same crudely composed message as before, except that the email address is different. It says, “All your data has been locked us. You want to return? Write email stopencrypt@qq.com” – again, the contact details may vary.

FILES ENCRYPTED.txt, one more version of ransom notes by .adobe ransomware
FILES ENCRYPTED.txt, one more version of ransom notes by .adobe ransomware

At the end of the day, the victim will be coerced to send about 0.2 Bitcoin (worth some 700 USD) to the black hats’ wallet. It’s not until the payment is made that the decryption key and recovery software will allegedly become available. None of this would be the case if users exercised more caution with the way they handle RDP connections. As a matter of fact, the Dharma/CrySiS ransomware, including its newest .adobe file variant, does the rounds exclusively by means of hacking remote desktop services. Default access credentials or weak passwords are the typical entry points for the trespass. By avoiding suspicious email attachments and keeping your software up to date, you will steer clear of most ransomware strains, but the .adobe virus may still pollute your machine as long as you aren’t a very prudent RDP user. Keep that in mind. For those already attacked, the following sections of this guide will come in handy as they provide alternative file recovery methods and effective removal steps.

.Adobe ransomware automated removal and data recovery

When faced with ransomware like .Adobe, one of the best shortcuts in terms of removal is to use Combo Cleaner, a lightweight and incredibly effective application with PC security and optimization features under the hood. It detects and thoroughly deletes threats while giving you insights into the overall health of your computer.

This program’s protection power spans modules that forestall all known types of malware, including ransomware and browser hijackers, and take your online security to the next level by blocking phishing sites and other suspicious web pages. Follow these simple steps to eliminate the infection for good:

1. Download Combo Cleaner installer.

Download .Adobe remover

Combo Cleaner scans your PC with no strings attached, but you’ll have to buy its fully functional version to remove the threats it detects. The disk optimization tools that find large files and duplicates are free to use.

Download and run Combo Cleaner installer on your PC

2. Open the CCSetup.exe file to get started. Several subsequent screens will allow you to make initial customizations so that the program works exactly as you need from the get-go.Setup customizations

3. The installation will be followed by an update of malware signatures. Once this process is through, click the Start Scan button in the left-hand sidebar.Start initial scan

4. Combo Cleaner will then check system locations that are most often polluted by Windows malware. The first scan can take a while to finish.Combo Cleaner scan in progress

5. Combo Cleaner will display a system tray notification as soon as the scan is over. Click the Resolve found threats button to view the results.Scan completed

6. The scan summary shows the names and types of the detected threats as well as their statuses and locations. Click the Remove all threats button and follow further on-screen prompts to get rid of these items.Scan results

Data recovery toolkit to the rescue

Some strains of ransomware are known to delete the original files after the encryption routine has been completed. As hostile as this activity appears, it can play into your hands. There are applications designed to revive the information that was obliterated because of malfunctioning hardware or due to accidental removal. The tool called Stellar Data Recovery features this type of a capability and therefore it can be applied in ransom attack scenarios to at least get the most important files back. So use the app to get an idea of what data can be restored and let it do the recovery job. Here is a step-by-step walkthrough:

1. Download and install Stellar Data Recovery.

Download Stellar Data Recovery

2. Open the application, select the types of recoverable files to look for, and click Next.Stellar Data Recovery main screen

3. Choose the areas you want the tool to recover from and click the Scan button.Select which PC areas to recover from

4. Having scanned the specified locations, the program will display a notification about the total amount of recoverable data. Close the dialog and click the Recover button. This will hopefully help you get some of your valuable files back.Recover files

.Adobe ransomware manual removal and file recovery

Some ransomware strains terminate themselves after completing the encryption job on a computer, but some don’t. Furthermore, the .Adobe virus may prevent victims from using popular antimalware tools in order to stay on board for as long as possible. Under the circumstances, it may be necessary to utilize the Safe Mode with Networking or System Restore functionality.

Remove .Adobe ransomware using Safe Mode with Networking

Remove .Adobe ransomware using Safe Mode with Networking

Get rid of .Adobe ransomware using System Restore

Get rid of .Adobe ransomware using System Restore

System Restore enables Windows users to roll back all changes made to the OS since the latest restore point creation time. This feature can help eliminate the most persistent ransomware. Before going this route, though, make sure System Restore had been enabled prior to the breach, otherwise the method will be inefficient.

  • Open Windows Advanced Options Menu as described in the previous section: hit F8 repeatedly when the PC is starting up. Use arrow keys to highlight the Safe Mode with Command Prompt entry. Hit Enter.Safe Mode with Command Prompt
  • In the Command Prompt window, type cd restore and hit Entercd restore command
  • Type rstrui.exe in the new command line and press EnterType rstrui.exe command
  • When the System Restore screen pops up, click Next, select a restore point that predates the contamination, and use the application’s controls to roll back the system to this earlier state.System Restore window
Be advised that even after the ransomware is removed, files will still be encrypted and inaccessible. The malicious code cleanup part, however, is important because it keeps a relapse of the infection from occurring further on and eliminates all opportunistic malware.

Ways of non-ransom recovery of .adobe files

Cracking the crypto used by this ransom Trojan is more of a science fiction thing rather than an attainable prospect for the masses. This is why the troubleshooting in predicaments of this sort is a matter of two approaches: one is to pay the ransom, which isn’t an option for many victims; and the other is to apply instruments that take advantage of the ransomware’s possible weaknesses. If the latter is your pick, the advice below is a must-try.

Backups can make your day

Backups can make your day

Not only are you a lucky person in case you’ve been backing up your most important files, but you’re also a wise and prudent user. This isn’t necessarily a resource-heavy activity these days – in fact, some providers of online services are allocating a sufficient size of cloud storage space for free so that every customer can easily upload their critical data without paying a penny. Having removed the .Adobe ransomware, therefore, all you have to do is download your stuff from the remote server or transfer it all from an external piece of hardware if that’s the case.

Restore previous versions of encrypted files

Restore previous versions of encrypted files

A positive upshot of using this technique depends on whether or not the ransomware has erased the Volume Shadow Copies of the files on your PC. This is a Windows feature that automatically makes and keeps the backups of data elements on the hard drive as long as System Restore is enabled. The cryptoware in question is programmed to switch off the Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS), but it has reportedly failed to in some cases.

Checking one’s options regarding this workaround is doable in two ways: through the Properties menu of each file or by means of the remarkable open-source tool called Shadow Explorer. We recommend the software-based way because it’s automated, hence faster and easier. Just install the app and use its intuitive controls to get previous versions of the encrypted objects reinstated.

Shadow Explorer

Alternatively, you can leverage the Previous Versions feature, which is native to Windows operating system. This method is more cumbersome that the use of ShadowExplorer, but it can help restore the most important individual files on condition that the ransomware failed to disable the Volume Snapshot Service on the computer. Right-click on a file of choice and select Properties. Then, go to the Previous Versions tab as illustrated below.

Previous Versions

Go ahead and pick the file’s latest backup version on the list. Use the Copy or Restore buttons to reinstate this object to a new path or to its original folder, respectively.

Ransomware Prevention Tips

To avoid .Adobe ransomware and other file-encrypting infections in the future, follow several simple recommendations:

  • Toggle your email provider’s anti-spam settings to filter out all the potentially harmful incoming messages. Raising the bar beyond the default protection is an important countermeasure for ransom Trojans
  • Define specific file extension restrictions in your email system. Make sure that attachments with the following extensions are blacklisted: .js, .vbs, .docm, .hta, .exe, .cmd, .scr, and .bat. Also, treat ZIP archives in received messages with extreme caution
  • Rename the vssadmin.exe process so that ransomware is unable to obliterate all Shadow Volume Copies of your files in one shot
  • Keep your Firewall active at all times. It can prevent crypto ransomware from communicating with its C&C server. This way, the threat won’t be able to obtain cryptographic keys and lock your files
  • Back up your files regularly, at least the most important ones. This recommendation is self-explanatory. A ransomware attack isn’t an issue as long as you keep unaffected copies of your data in a safe place
  • Use an effective antimalware suite. There are security tools that identify ransomware-specific behavior and block the infection before it can do any harm.

These techniques are certainly not a cure-all, but they will add an extra layer of ransomware protection to your security setup.

Revise your security status

Post-factum assessment of the accuracy component in malware removal scenarios is a great habit that prevents the comeback of harmful code or replication of its unattended fractions. Make sure you are good to go by running an additional safety checkup. Another benefit of using the antimalware tool is that it will keep ransomware threats from intruding on your computer further on.

Download .Adobe removal tool

Rate article

3.67/5 (3)


  1. imran

    January 30, 2019 at 3:12 pm

    Dear sir/madam,

    I am infected from a Ransomware file .dhkhdwp. adobee. my system all files extensions changed to “.dhkhdwp.adobee”,
    mean after each files an extra file extensions added like ” imran.docx.dhkhdwp.adobee” , I am unable to open any file,
    all files like pdf, docs, jpg, gif, exe, txt etc are infected, please help me to prevent/recover my files

    Important thing is that this ransomeware also stope/block the web browsing after 20-minutes,
    and message comes that ” DNS_PROBE_FINISHED_NO_INTERNET ”
    I am very thankful to you.

    Thanks again.

    In the hosts file fowling address is showing about this ransomeware ,
    please check and guide us how to recover the files from that. space1.adminpressure.space trackpressure.website htagzdownload.pw texttotalk.org 360devtraking.website room1.360dev.info djapp.info technologievimy.com


    • Dhave Barsalote

      February 26, 2019 at 3:59 am

      Hi, what’s the update of you comment? Where you able to recover your infected files? This happened to me to january 26, 2019.


  2. imran

    March 10, 2019 at 6:16 pm

    2Dhave – I tried all the methods and the virus has finally gone, I restored files from the shadow copies on my HDD.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.