Keeping your personal data safe doesn't have to be difficult—as long as you keep the sensitive stuff encrypted and under your control.
That's why this week we're looking at the five best file encryption tools you can use to encrypt your data locally so only you have the key. Earlier in the week we asked you for your favorite file encryption toolsand you gave us tons of great nominations, but as always, we only have room for the top five. For the purposes of our roundup, we're focusing on desktop file encryption tools - the ones you use on your own computer to encrypt your own private data, not cloud services that promise to encrypt your data, or business services that say they offer encryption.
The goal here is to find the best tools you can use to lock down your sensitive files—whether they're photos, financial documents, personal backups, or anything else—and keep them locked down so only you have the key.
For those unfamiliar with the topic, we have a great guide on how encryption worksand how you can use it to keep your own data safe. With that out of the way, here are your top five, in no particular order:. VeraCrypt is a fork of and a successor to TrueCrypt, which ceased development last year more on them later. The development team claims they've addressed some of the issues that were raised during TrueCrypt's initial security audit, and like the original, it's free, with versions available for Windows, OS X, and Linux.
How to encrypt files and folders in Windows 10, 8 or 7
If you're looking for a file encryption tool that works like and reminds you of TrueCrypt but isn't exactly TrueCrypt, this is it. VeraCrypt supports AES the most commonly usedTwoFish, and Serpent encryption ciphers, supports the creation of hidden, encrypted volumes within other volumes. Its code is available to review, although it's not strictly open source because so much of its codebase came from TrueCrypt. The tool is also under constant development, with regular security updates and an independent audit in the planning stages according to the developers.
Those of you who nominated VeraCrypt praised it for being an on-the-fly encryption tool, as in your files are only decrypted when they're needed and they're encrypted at rest at all other times, and most notably for being the spiritual if not almost literal successor to TrueCrypt. Many of you praised them for being a strong tool that's simple to use and to the point, even if it's lacking a good-looking interface or tons of bells and whistles.
You also noted that VeraCrypt may not support TrueCrypt files and containers, but can convert them to its own format, which makes moving to it easy.
You can read more in its nomination thread here. It integrates nicely with the Windows shell, so you can right-click a file to encrypt it, or even configure "timed," executable encryptions, so the file is locked down for a specific period of time and will self-decrypt later, or when its intended recipient gets it. Files with AxCrypt can be decrypted on demand or kept decrypted while they're in use, and then automatically re-encrypted when they're modified or closed. It's fast, too, and allows you to select an entire folder or just a large group of files and encrypt them all with a single click.
It's entirely a file encryption tool however, meaning creating encrypted volumes or drives is out of its capabilities. It supports bit AES encryption only, offers protection against brute force cracking attempts, and is exceptionally lightweight less than 1MB. Those of you who nominated AxCrypt noted that it's really easy to use and easy to integrate into your workflow, thanks to its shell support.
If you're eager for more options, it also has a ton of command line options, so you can fire up the command prompt in Windows and perform more complex actions—or multiple actions at once. It may not support the strongest or most varied encryption methods available, but if you're looking to keep your data safe from most threats, it's a simple tool that can lend a little security that your data—like files stored in the cloud on Dropbox or iCloud, for example—are secure and convenient to access at the same time.
You can read more in this nomination thread here and here. It supports AES and bit encryption, and while it's primarily used for whole-disk encryption, it also supports encrypting other volumes or a virtual drive that can be opened and accessed like any other drive on your computer. It supports multiple authentication mechanisms, including traditional password and PINs, a USB "key," and the more controversial Trusted Platform Module TPM technology that uses hardware to integrate keys into devices that makes encryption and decryption transparent to the user but also comes with a host of its own issues.
Either way, BitLocker's integration with Windows specifically Windows 8 Pro makes it accessible to many people, and a viable disk encryption tool for individuals looking to protect their data if their laptop or hard drives are lost or stolen, in case their computers are compromised, or a business looking to secure data in the field. Of course, it goes without saying that BitLocker was a contentious nomination. More than a few of you touted BitLocker's accessibility and ease of use, and many of you even praised its encryption for being strong and difficult to crack.
Many of you noted that you switched to BitLocker after the developers of TrueCrypt suggested it.Using Password Depotyou can easily encrypt or decrypt external files regardless of their fomat. The files will be decrypted with the safe algorithm AES Bit. You can find the corresponding functions Encrypt and Decrypt on the tab Tools. With the function Encrypt external files you can encrypt any files using a password so that no non-authorized person can access your data. From the Tools tab select the option Encrypt.
In the dialog box that opens select the file s you wish to encrypt and click Open. Enter the password which you will use to decrypt the file later into the Enter password field. To remove the original file, check the option Delete original file s after encryption. This option is useful if you wish to encrypt a file that has been accessible for several people and to delete the version which could be accessed by all.
The original file is then deleted without any traces from the hard disk thanks to secure algorithms. Select the option Create a self-extracting archive if a user which has not installed Password Depot on his PC should be able to open it. In case you have chosen more than one file, you can select the option Create a single output file to encrypt all files in one file.
If you want to save the password for the encrypted file in Password Depot check the option Store password in Password Depot. To do so you will need to have your database open. In the next dialog, confirm that you want to add the password to your file and it will automatically saved as an encrypted file entry.
Click OK to encrypt the file s. With the function Decrypt external files you can decrypt any encrypted files if you have a valid password. From the Tools tab select the option Decrypt external files.
Click Open. Enter the corresponding password of the file into the Password Depot - Encrypt dialog box. To remove the encrypted file afterwards, check the option Delete encrypted files after decryption if you no longer need it.
Click OK to decrypt the file. Return to the Password Depot homepage leave this help.April 1, by Ventsislav Krastev. STOP ransomware is the type of malware, with the main idea behind it, to get users to pay a ransom in BitCoin to get their files back. Not all variants of this ransomware can be decrypted for free, but we have added the decryptor used by researchers that is often updated with the variants which become eventually decrypted.
You can try and decrypt your files using the instructions below, but if they do not work, then unfortunately your variant of the ransomware virus is not decryptable. Follow the instructions below to use the Emsisoft decrypter and decrypt your files for free. You can download the Emsisoft decryption tool linked here and then follow the steps provided below:. Step 1 Right-click on the decrypter and click on Run as Administrator as shown below:.
Note: Credit for the decryptor goes to Emsisoft researchers who have made the breakthrough with this virus. The following extensions are supported by the decryption tool:. These changes make the way the decrypter work impossible, starting with. Apparently, the cybercriminals started to utilize proper asymmetrical encryption, meaning the offline keys will no longer be valid for decryption after the release of the final keys Gillespie extracted. The researcher is now working towards closing this decrypter, and continuing work on a new decrypter that will work only for the old versions of STOP up to.
It is designed to support specific offline IDs, so it may not be effective for all occasions of the various iterations of the ransomware. The uppercase file extension variants only include uppercase extensions and they are a bit outdated, while the Puma and Djvu variants are relatively new ones as the Djvu variants of STOP ransomware being the latest viruses to hit the world.
To decrypt your files with the older STOPDecrypter, you can follow these old instructions, but researchers advise that you use the newer version provided above.
Unfortunately since the decryption tool of STOP Ransomware has been discontinued, it is recommended that you try out the Emsisoft Decryption Steps written above Step 1 Extract the decrypter somewhere:. Step 4 Click on Decrypt and be patient. The software will return how many files were decrypted:. Be sure to only remove STOP once your files are decrypted. If the files are not decrypted, you should wait until security researchers update the decryptor to work for your variant.
Until then, we strongly recommend that you backup your encrypted files and NOT pay the ransomware. Also, you can try and get some of your files back by following the alternative recovery instructions underneath.
They are no guarantee that you will get all your files back, but with their help, you could restore at least some of the files. To remove STOP ransomwareyou should follow the first two steps. If they do not work, then try to remove this virus automatically with an advanced anti-malware software. Such software is often the preffered removal method, since it aims to detect an delete all STOP files plus remove them.Even 7 powerful core components to leverage your PC's performance, security and privacy.
It is currently capable of decrypting virus versions out of The tool can help victims recover their files without paying a ransom to the cyber criminals.ransomware decrypt any file
The guide below will explain how to restore data using the said recover tool. The malicious virus was mostly distributed using malicious keygens, software cracks and tools like KMSPico. The malicious payload was strategically hidden in these popular, yet illegal files used to activate paid software for free. These emerged around August The most popular new STOP ransomware versions and possibility to recover files based on the key type are listed below. Here is the updated list:.
Keep in mind that the offline key takes time to extract, to the very last versions such as. Please note that you must remove DJVU ransomware virus before you try to recover your files. If you have been attacked by this ransomware after Augustyou need to determine whether online or offline key was used to lock your files. Otherwise, it uses an offline key, which is the same one for all victims of one ransomware variant with the same extension.
If an offline key was used, you have chances to restore data now or in the near future. Unfortunately, we cannot say the same about victims affected by the online keys. Please note that some versions can be decrypted only if offline key was used.
How to Encrypt and Decrypt Files and Folders in Windows 10
If your files were affected with online key and the decryption is impossible, you will see the following message: No key for New Variant. Please note that new versions like. All your files like photos, databases, documents and other important are encrypted with strongest encryption and unique key. The only method of recovering files is to purchase decrypt tool and unique key for you.
This software will decrypt all your encrypted files.
MEO File Encryption Software
What guarantees you have? You can send one of your encrypted file from your PC and we decrypt it for free. But we can decrypt only 1 file for free. File must not contain valuable information. An easy way to find some pairs is to check encrypted files in your downloads and trace the source where you downloaded them from. For instance, if you have downloaded some files from email or specific website recently, you can download a copy from email and check for encrypted version in your downloads.
Your downloads are likely to contain various file types that you have downloaded from the Internet. Try to remember exactly where you got them from so that you could download them again and have data pairs for as many different file extensions as possible. For example, you need image. Victims whose files were infected with. After purchase you will start decrypt software, enter your unique private key and it will decrypt all your data.
Only we can give you this key and only we can recover your files. For you to be sure, that we can decrypt your files — you can send us a any not very big encrypted files and we will send you back it in a original form FREE. We hope that you found this tutorial helpful and you managed to decrypt files infected by DJVU ransomware successfully. We strongly recommend you to read ransomware prevention tips to avoid similar malware attacks in the future. He is the chief editor of the website who controls the quality of content published.Are you trying to open some files on your computer that are encrypted?
Windows will usually designate encrypted file or folder names with the color green instead of the normal black text. You pretty much have to pay the ransom and hope they actually send you the encryption keys.
When encrypting files and folders, Windows will use a self-generated certificate that contains keys used to encrypt and decrypt the data. When opening encrypted data when logged into the user account that generated the certificate, the decryption process is transparent and the files are opened normally. However, if another user or system tries to access those same data files or if the files are moved to another location, then they cannot be opened unless the original certificate is installed.
You should definitely do this immediately. If you do not have these encryption keys, you will not be able to decrypt the data.
If you can still access the computer where the data was originally encrypted, you can try exporting the certificate and then importing it on a different machine. The first way is to click on Start and type in certificate. Click on Manage user certificates and this will open up the certificates for the current user. In Windows 7, you can also type in certmgr.
Now expand Personal and then click on Certificates. You should see all the certificates listed in the right pane. Right-click on the certificate, choose All Tasks and then click on Export.
This will open the Certificate Export Wizardwhich is the same place you will reach if you click on Back up now recommended when prompted by Windows. On the next screen, you will want to select Yes, export the private key along with the certificate. On the next screen, you have to choose the format you want to use to export the certificate.
Personal Information Exchange should already be selected and you can leave it with just the first box checked. Since this certificate contains a private key, you are required to protect it using a password. Check the Password box and type in a strong password. Finally, click Browse and choose a location where you want to save the file.
It is highly recommended you do not save the file onto the computer itself. If something happens to the PC, then you lose the key along with it. Also, give your file a name that is helpful for you, but not super obvious to others what it is. Click next and then click Finish.
Your private encryption key is now saved as a file. You can now take this file and import it on any other Windows machine. Importing is really easy.April 1, by Ventsislav Krastev. So with ransomware evolving, the common user does not really have the capability or the know-how on how he or she can fight back to this menace and get the files back without having to go through the painstaking process of paying BitCoins.
This is why, we as a security blog with extensive experience in how such viruses encrypt your files have decided to go over the main methods that you can use to restore your encrypted files in the event that there is no decryptor that is officially working for the virus at hand.
This basically means that the virus infects your computer after which runs a set of processes which create a copy of the original file and this copy has parts of data replaces with data from the encryption algorithm used RSA, AES, etc.
The original file is then deleted and the virus leaves the file to appear as if it is corrupt. After the encryption is complete the ransomware generates a decryption key, which can be either Private symmetric or public. The trend nowadays is for ransomware viruses to use a combination of both, making the direct decryption even more impossible than it was before, unless you have a decryption software which is again, coded by the ransomware authors.
For more information on how encryption exactly works, you can check the related article underneath:. So, having briefly explained what has happened to your files, let us now discuss what you can do to get them to work again. In this article we have done our research to best provide you with instructions on the different alternative tools that you can use to get the files back.
To install some hope in you recovering your files, however, I will say that depending on the virus and the situation, we have received feedback from ransomware victims who used those methods to restore some of their files and users who were able to restore absolutely every file that was encrypted successfully.
Oh yes, and before you start readin about those tools and methods, be advised to read the decription of each method as we have explained where it can be used with maximum effectiveness, since this method is likely to be appropriate for your specific situation. Let us start! Method By using a Data Recovery Program. Appropriate Situation When there is no decryption available for the ransomware, but you can still use Windows to install and run software.
Instructions Difficulty Easy Sometimes the safest methods against file encryption are to go around the encryption and focus on the original files that are deleted by the ransomware virus.
But for this method to work, it is important to know that you should not format your hard drive as many victims simply copy the encrypted files to an external drive and reinstall their Windows, which significantly decreases the chances of recovering your files. There are many data recovery programs out there and we have done a Top 10 comparison with statistics by testing recently deleted files and files deleted after reformat on a separate partitio of a Windows 10 machine see related article below.
So, based on our experience with Data Recovery programs, the natural choice for us is to provide you with instructions on how to recover your files, using the 1st program in the Top 10 review — Stellar Phoenix Windows Data recovery.
Here is how you can recover your files by using this software. Step2 Step 2: Open the downloaded file on your browser:. Step4 Step 4: When the program starts automatically simply select the file types you want to recover and click on Next :. Step5 Step 5: Select the drive on which to scan for those files and then click on Scan :. The program will start scanning for files and will take some time. After the scan is complete, it will open a file explorer with file preview which will help you choose which files you wish to recover:.
Method 2 - Restore Files via Windows Backup. Instructions Difficulty Easy Windows Backup remains to likely be the most popular method that is used when it comes to the recovery of your important files and this is why it is always reccomended to set up Automatic Backup in Windows, because if the ransomware is not that complicated or well-made, it will hot be able to delete your backups.
Step3 Step 3: When the Settings are opened, click on the Backup icon:. Step6 Step 6: From the File History Window, select the files you want to restore and then click on the restore button in bottom-center:. Method Via the program Shadow Explorer. Appropriate Situation This method is used when your backup has been set up, but is NOT active and workinghowever the backed up files are not deleted.
Instructions Difficulty Easy The Shadow Explorer program is a very useful way to check if you have any left-over shadow copies and it can help you restore your files in case the shadow copies of your computer are active, but for some reason, the ransomware virus has disabled Windows Backup and Recovery and you cannot use it in any way. Step2 Step 2: Open and Extract the contents of the.Create a technical support case if you need further support.
This guide provides the instructions and location for downloading and using the latest Trend Micro Ransomware File Decryptor tool to attempt to decrypt files encrypted by certain ransomware families. As an important reminder, the best protection against ransomware is preventing it from ever reaching your system.
While Trend Micro is constantly working to update our tools, ransomware writers are also constantly changing their methods and tactics, which can make previous versions of tools such as this one obsolete over time. Trend Micro customers are encouraged to visit the following sites for more information on ransomware and prevention best practices:. The following list describes the known ransomware-encrypted files types can be handled by the latest version of the tool.
Download RansomwareFileDecryptor. Using this information, an affected user can select the suspected ransomware name to decrypt files. Users having trouble identifying the type of ransomware should contact Trend Micro Technical Support for further assistance.
Files Automatically Encrypted, How to Remove Encryption from Files
The tool can either attempt to decrypt a single file or all files in a folder and its sub-folders by using recursive mode. After the file s or folder s are selected, the tool will start scanning and decrypting files automatically.
If the scan target is a folder, the tool will collect some file information from the target folder first to help identify which files need to be decrypted.
During the scan, a scrollbar will indicate the decrypting progress, and the UI will be updated to indicate how many files are encrypted and the number of files have been decrypted.
The tool can decrypt certain types of ransomware-encrypted files e. TeslaCrypt files very quickly. However, other file types e. CryptXXX may take significantly longer.
The overall duration also depends on how many files are located in the target folder. If the tool identifies files encrypted by one of the ransomware mentioned above, it will ask the user to provide additional information to proceed due to some unique processing required for the specific decryption. The user will need to select a infected file and a matching non-infected file if there is an available backup copy the larger the file size the better.
By clicking See encrypted filesthe tool opens the encrypted file location or folder which was selected for scanning. The decrypted files are resident in opened folder. The decrypted file name s will be the same as the previously encrypted file swith the exception being the removal of the extension appended by the ransomware.
By clicking Donethe tool returns to the main UI. Repeat step 1 and 2 to decrypt more files. Due to the advanced encryption of this particular Crypto-Ransomware, only partial data decryption is currently possible on files affected by CryptXXX V3.
When opening the fixed file with Microsoft Office, it may present a message to try and repair the file again, and this process may be able to recover the document. Please note that due to the different versions of Microsoft Office and particular file behaviors, it is not guaranteed that this method will completely recover the document.
An example of this would be a photo or image file that is partially recovered to show parts of the image, but not the entire image. A user would then determine if the file is critical enough to utilize a 3rd party tool or seek assistance from an 3rd party professional file recovery service. Unfortunately, Trend Micro Technical Support will be extremely limited in any sort assistance that can be provided regarding 3rd party file recovery.
BadBlock can encypt essential system files, which may cause issues like not allowing the operating system OS to load properly after a reboot if infected. After the decryption, the original PE file name will be restored. CERBER decryption must be executed on the infected machine itself as opposed to another machine since the tool needs to try and locate the first infected file for a critical decryption calculation.
Due to the method of decryption for CERBER, the tool may take several hours average is 4 to complete decryption on a standard Intel i5 dual-core machine. In addition, the encryption logic for CERBER also is built in such a way that the more cores a CPU has, the lower percentage chance of success for the decryption because of its complexity.
Similar to some other types of ransomware encryption, some files may be only partially decrypted and may require a subsequent file repair. The average decryption time varies from approximately ten 10 hours with a 4-core CPU machine to thirty 30 hours with a single-core PC machine.