Wagner (Xorist) Ransomware
Scientists uncovered the Wagner malware threat and categorized it as a fresh strain of ransomware. Wagner deploys encryption protocols to lock files, appends the ".Wagner2.0" extension to their original names, and exhibits a ransom note in the form of a text file labeled 'КАК РАСШИФРОВАТЬ ФАЙЛЫ.txt.' Additionally, it triggers a pop-up window containing the same content. On systems without Ciryllic language installed, the message in the pop-up window will likely appear as gibberish.
To illustrate Wagner's file renaming scheme, the threat will change '1.png' into '1.png.Wagner2.0,' and '2.pdf' into '2.pdf.Wagner2.0,' following the same pattern for other files. It should be noted that there has been a previous ransomware threat tracked as Wagner, but this is a different strain belonging to the Xorist Ransomware family.
The Wagner (Xorist) Ransomware Takes Victims' Data Hostage
The ransom note of the Wagner (Xorist) Ransomware is written entirely in Russian. Those without Russian language support in their systems are confronted with a jumble of nonsensical characters. Within the note lies a message connected to the entity known as 'PMC Wagner for the Defense of RUSSIA.' It exudes a palpable frustration directed at figures termed 'SHOIGU' and 'GERASEMOV,' implying a link to a critical conflict or situations where lives hang in the balance. The note champions a call to action, beseeching someone to stand against an unspecified adversary, all while invoking a profound sense of divine presence.
It should be evident that the delivered ransom note is far from the usual ransom-demanding message left by ransomware threats. Typically seen in ransomware scenarios, these notes contain a declaration that the victim's files have been locked and rendered inaccessible. Subsequently, they lay out step-by-step instructions for arranging a ransom payment, often in cryptocurrency, to secure a decryption tool. Implicit or explicit threats of irreversible data loss or escalating ransom sums might be utilized to coerce the victims.
These messages frequently furnish contact details along with stern warnings against attempting file recovery sans ransom payment. Nonetheless, experts vehemently discourage acceding to ransom demands due to the inherent risks involved, which encompass uncertain data retrieval outcomes and potential financial setbacks.
Make Sure to Implement Robust Security Measures Against Ransomware Attacks
Safeguarding data and devices from ransomware attacks necessitates a comprehensive approach involving various security measures. Here are the key steps users can take to bolster their defenses:
- Regular Data Backups: Create and maintain regular backups of critical data. Ensure these backups are stored on separate, offline devices or secure cloud platforms. This enables data restoration without succumbing to ransom demands.
- Update Software: Keep operating systems, applications, and security software up to date. Vulnerabilities in outmoded software can be exploited by ransomware. Enable automatic updates whenever possible.
- Use Reliable Security Software: Invest in reputable anti-malware solutions that offer real-time protection against known and emerging threats, including ransomware.
- Email Vigilance: Be cautious with email attachments and links, especially from unknown sources. Ransomware often spreads through malicious attachments or links in phishing emails.
- Employee Training: Educate yourself and your employees about ransomware threats, common attack vectors, and safe online practices. Human error is a significant factor in ransomware infections.
- Strong Passwords: Use strong, unique passwords for all accounts and devices. Consider the use of a password manager to keep track of complex passwords.
- Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): Enable MFA wherever possible. This adds an extra coat of security by requiring additional verification beyond just a password.
- Offline Storage: Keep essential data offline when not needed. This prevents ransomware from accessing or encrypting it even if the device is compromised.
- Avoid Paying Ransoms: Experts recommend against paying ransoms, as there's no guarantee you'll get your data back, and it funds criminal activities. Consult with law enforcement and cybersecurity professionals instead.
By implementing these security measures, users can significantly reduce their vulnerability to ransomware attacks and ensure the safety of their data and devices.
The text found in the ransom note generated by the Wagner Ransomware in its original Russian is:
'Официальный троян ЧВК Вагнера по защите РОССИИ®?
ХВАТИТ ТЕРПЕТЬ ШОЙГУ,ГЕРАСЕМОВА,НАЦИСТОВ СПАСИ СВОЮ страну от чиновников из-за них умирают люди на войне зачем это? бери оружие брат и иди против врага! с нами Бог
часть декодора 61LGYoY1m'