MMDT ransomware is a dangerous menace to your computer and data stored on it
- MMDT ransomware is a dangerous menace to your computer and data stored on it
- Ransomware distribution strategies and how to stay safe
- Remove MMDT ransomware virus and decrypt or recover your files
- Decrypt MMDT files
- Frequently Asked Questions
MMDT ransomware is a file-encrypting computer program that classifies as a virus. It was created by cybercriminals behind the STOP/DJVU ransomware family and this version uses .mmdt extension to mark encrypted files. After being launched on the computer system, it encrypts files using RSA cryptography and then appends a new extension to the filenames. To illustrate, files previously called 1.jpg and 2.txt will appear as 1.jpg.mmdt and 2.txt.mmdt after the encryption. To provide the confused computer user with an explanation, the virus drops _readme.txt ransom notes in each affected data folder.
The aim of this ransomware is to extort the computer user financially. The virus is designed to lock personal files so that they could no longer be accessed by their owner, and cause frustration for one. The malware then leaves messages from the attackers that the victim is expected to pay a ransom in order to recover encrypted data. Victims usually download this threat via pirated software versions advertised online.
Contents of the ransom note explained
The cybercriminals explain their intentions and expectations of what the victim should do in a ransom note called _readme.txt. It begins with a large “Attention!” line, which is then followed by a reassurance that the victim can still recover all of the lost data. According to the next statements, the only way to recover files is to pay a ransom for the cybercriminals, and if the victim wants some “guarantees” that the criminals can recover data, one can send a sample of encrypted file to the attackers via email. The note includes two email addresses that belong to the cybercriminals – email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
The perpetrators also state that MMDT file decryption tool costs $980, but the victim can get a 50% discount if one writes to the attackers within 72 hours starting from the computer infection timestamp. This means the costs $490. The criminals only accept cryptocurrency payments, preferably made in Bitcoin. They may elaborate on this topic more once the victim contacts them via email.
Cybersecurity professionals do not recommend paying the virtual criminals. Moreover, victims can read more why payments should not be made in this FBI guide for ransomware victims. The main reasons why it is not a good idea to pay up are outlined below:
- Paying the ransom does not, in any way, provide you guarantees that the criminals will do what they promised, plus, there won’t be any chance to get a refund.
- Sending money to criminals motivates them, plus allows them to expand their criminal operations and attack more people.
- Malware operators often repeatedly target or blackmail people who have already paid the ransom, in hopes to extract more money from a tractable victim.
This ransomware often arrives with Remote Access Trojans
Victims of STOP/DJVU ransomware, including the described variant, should be aware of the fact that this computer threat rarely arrives on its own. Malware analysts point out that it often arrives with Remote Access Trojans (RATs) – VIDAR or AZORult, both known for their capabilities to steal browser-saved passwords, cookies, browsing history, cryptocurrency wallet data or even coins stored in offline wallets. With their hands on such sensitive information, crooks can steal victim’s accounts or even continue to blackmail the computer user.
It is essential to take care of your computer’s security, so we believe that you should remove MMDT ransomware virus along other malware installed ASAP. The best way to do it is to boot your computer in Safe Mode with Networking and run a genuine antivirus solution to do its job. You can find instructions on how to prepare your computer for the malware removal below. In addition, we advise that you download RESTORO and use it to repair some virus-damaged Windows OS files.
|Name||MMDT Ransomware Virus|
|Type||Ransomware; Crypto-malware; Virtual Extortion Virus|
|Encryption type||RSA 2048 + Salsa20|
|Previous versions||FATP, FATE, TCBU, POZQ, ZATP, ZATE (find full list here)|
|Cybercriminal email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Additional malware dropped||Azorult or Vidar Trojan|
|Damage||The ransomware uses encryption to maliciously modify all files on the PC and marks their original names with .mmdt extension. Ransom notes called as _readme.txt will be dropped in every computer folder. This piece of malware usually drags VIDAR Stealer alongside it and also eliminates VSS from the system. On top of that, it tends to modify Windows HOSTS file to restrict computer user’s access to cybersecurity-related websites online.|
|Ransom demand||$490-$980 in Bitcoin|
|Distribution||Victims often download this ransomware along illegal torrent downloads, cracked software, activators, key generators or tools like KMSPico.|
|Known software cracks to contain this malware||Corel Draw, Tenorshare 4ukey, Adobe Photoshop, Cubase, Adobe Illustrator, Internet Download Manager, Tally, League of Legends.|
|Detection names||Ransom:Win32/Vigorf.A (Microsoft), Ransom:Win32/Vigorf.A, HEUR:Trojan-HEUR:Trojan.Win32.Injuke.gen (Kaspersky), Trojan.GenericKD.61723659 (BitDefender), Trojan.MalPack.GS (Malwarebytes), ML.Attribute.HighConfidence (Symantec) see all detection name variations on VirusTotal|
|Removal||Remove ransomware and related malware from your PC using trustworthy software. To repair virus damage on Windows OS files, consider scanning with RESTORO (secure download link).|
REPAIR VIRUS DAMAGE
Scan your system for FREE to detect security, hardware and stability issues. You can use the scan results and try to remove threats manually, or you can choose to get the full version of software to fix detected issues and repair virus damage to Windows OS system files automatically. Includes Avira spyware/malware detection & removal engine.
To see how encrypted files appear in data folders, see the image below.
Ransomware distribution strategies and how to stay safe
MMDT ransomware virus spreads in a form of pirated software versions under different names. The cybercriminals who operate the STOP/DJVU ransomware tend to advertise these fake downloads via rogue websites, claiming they provide free ways to activate premium software with the help of cracks and key generators. Such rogue websites usually allow the user to download the alleged software setup via direct link or via torrents. No matter which way, the victim receives an archived file, which is often password-protected, with a malicious setup.exe file inside of it. Once it is run, it launches the malware on the computer.
Users should never visit rogue websites promoting illegal downloads. Instead, they should go to legitimate websites that provide genuine software versions. It is a safe way to get the software they need without any security and privacy risks involved.
Phishing emails are also commonly used to spread malware. Cybercriminals attach malicious files to them, usually in DOCX, XLS or PDF formats. If the victim falls for the trick and opens the attachment, the computer can get severely infected. It is important to stay cautious when checking email, especially in these times when cybercriminals are so crafty when composing deceptive messages. They tend to pretend to be someone else, for example, a well-known company or target’s colleague, and lie about important documents that need to be reviewed by the target. The attachments usually come named as invoices, subscription renewal details, order summaries, waybills, etc.
However, computer users should use common sense and never interact with emails that weren’t awaited or come from entities that they have no business with. In addition, we advise looking out for other red flags such as unfamiliar sender’s greeting line, grammar or typo errors, weird-looking sender’s email address and other suspicious details that should alert you about malevolent intentions behind the email.
Remove MMDT ransomware virus and decrypt or recover your files
Computer users who have fallen victim to the described computer malware should endeavor to remove MMDT ransomware virus as quickly as possible. We advise looking at the instructions provided by our team and start your PC in Safe Mode with Networking. From there, you can safely run a genuine copy of an antivirus software and let it automatically detect components of the malware that infected your PC. Afterward, we recommend you to download RESTORO to identify Windows OS files damaged by the virus and try to repair them automatically.
Once MMDT virus removal is finalized, check out these additional recommendations:
- Use data backups or other resources in your control to restore encrypted data.
- Inform local law enforcement agency about the cyberattack.
- Change all passwords for online accounts that you used to access via the compromised computer.
OUR GEEKS RECOMMEND
Our team recommends a two-step rescue plan to remove ransomware and other remaining malware from your computer, plus repair caused virus damage to the system:
MMDT Ransomware Virus Removal Guidelines
Method 1. Enter Safe Mode with Networking
Step 1. Start Windows in Safe Mode with Networking
Before you try to remove MMDT Ransomware Virus virus, you must start your computer in Safe Mode with Networking. Below, we provide the easiest ways to boot PC in the said mode, but you can find additional ones in this in-depth tutorial on our website – How to Start Windows in Safe Mode. Also, if you prefer a video version of the tutorial, check our guide How to Start Windows in Safe Mode on Youtube.
Instructions for Windows XP/Vista/7 users
- First of all, turn off your PC. Then press the Power button to start it again and instantly start pressing F8 button on your keyboard repeatedly in 1-second intervals. This launches the Advanced Boot Options menu.
- Use arrow keys on the keyboard to navigate down to Safe Mode with Networking option and press Enter.
Instructions for Windows 8/8.1/10/11 users
- Open Windows Start menu, then press down the Power button. On your keyboard, press down and hold the Shift key, and then select Restart option.
- This will take you to Windows Troubleshoot screen. Choose Troubleshoot > Advanced Options > Startup Settings > Restart. Tip: If you can't find Startup Settings, click See more recovery options.
- In Startup Settings, press the right key between F1-F9 to enter Safe Mode with Networking. In this case, it is the F5 key.
Step 2. Remove files associated with the virus
Now, you can search for and remove MMDT Ransomware Virus files. It is very hard to identify files and registry keys that belong to the ransomware virus, Besides, malware creators tend to rename and change them repeatedly. Therefore, the easiest way to uninstall such type of a computer virus is to use a reliable security program such as INTEGO Antivirus. For virus damage repair, consider using RESTORO.
Compatibility: Microsoft Windows
See Full Review
RESTORO is a unique PC Repair Tool which comes with an in-built Avira scan engine to detect and remove spyware/malware threats and uses a patented technology to repair virus damage. The software can repair damaged, missing or malfunctioning Windows OS files, corrupted DLLs, and more. The free version offers a scan that detects issues. To fix them, license key for the full software version must be purchased.
Method 2. Use System Restore
In order to use System Restore, you must have a system restore point, created either manually or automatically.
Step 1. Boot Windows in Safe Mode with Command Prompt
Instructions for Windows XP/Vista/7 users
- Shut down your PC. Start it again by pressing the Power button and instantly start pressing F8 button on your keyboard repeatedly in 1-second intervals. You will see Advanced Boot Options menu.
- Using arrow keys on the keyboard, navigate down to Safe Mode with Command Prompt option and press Enter.
Instructions for Windows 8/8.1/10/11 users
- Launch Windows Start menu, then click the Power button. On your keyboard, press down and hold the Shift key, and then choose Restart option with the mouse cursor.
- In Startup Settings, press the right key between F1-F9 to enter Safe Mode with Command Prompt. In this case, press F6 key.
Step 2. Start System Restore process
- Wait until system loads and command prompt shows up.
- Type cd restore and press Enter, then type rstrui.exe and press Enter. Or you can just type %systemroot%system32restorerstrui.exe in command prompt and hit Enter.
- This launches System Restore window. Click Next and then choose a System Restore point created in the past. Choose one that was created before ransomware infection.
- Click Yes to begin the system restoration process.
After restoring the system, we recommend scanning the system with antivirus or anti-malware software. In most cases, there won't be any malware remains, but it never hurts to double-check. In addition, we highly recommend checking ransomware prevention guidelines provided by our experts in order to protect your PC against similar viruses in the future.
Alternative software recommendations
Removing spyware and malware is one step towards cybersecurity. To protect yourself against ever-evolving threats, we strongly recommend purchasing a Premium version of Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, which provides security based on artificial intelligence and machine learning. Includes ransomware protection. See pricing options and protect yourself now.
System Mechanic Ultimate Defense
If you're looking for an all-in-one system maintenance suite that has 7 core components providing powerful real-time protection, on-demand malware removal, system optimization, data recovery, password manager, online privacy protection and secure driver wiping technology. Therefore, due to its wide-range of capabilities, System Mechanic Ultimate Defense deserves Geek's Advice approval. Get it now for 50% off. You may also be interested in its full review.
Disclaimer. This site includes affiliate links. We may earn a small commission by recommending certain products, at no additional cost for you. We only choose quality software and services to recommend.
Decrypt MMDT files
Fix and open large MMDT files easily:
It is reported that STOP/DJVU ransomware versions encrypt only the beginning 150 KB of each file to ensure that the virus manages to affect all files on the system. In some cases, the malicious program might skip some files at all. That said, we recommend testing this method on several big (>1GB) files first.
- Create a copy of encrypted file to a separate folder using Copy > Paste commands.
- Now, right-click the created copy and choose Rename. Select the MMDT extension and delete it. Press Enter to save changes.
- In the prompt asking whether you want to make the changes as file might become unusable, click OK.
- Try opening the file.
STOP/DJVU decryption tool usage guide
STOP/DJVU ransomware versions are grouped into old and new variants. MMDT Ransomware Virus is considered the new STOP/DJVU variant, just like FATP, FATE, TCBU, POZQ, ZATP, ZATE (find full list here). This means full data decryption is now possible only if you have been affected by offline encryption key. To decrypt your files, you will have to download Emsisoft Decryptor for STOP DJVU, a tool created and maintained by a genius security researcher Michael Gillespie.
Note! Please do not spam the security researcher with questions whether he can recover your files encrypted with online key - it is not possible.
In order to test the tool and see if it can decrypt MMDT files, follow the given tutorial.
- Download the decryption tool from Emsisoft.
- Click the little arrow next to your download and choose Show in Folder.
- Now, right-click the file and choose Run as Administrator. If asked, enter administrator's password.
- In UAC window, click Yes.
- Click Yes to agree to software terms in both windows.
- The tool will automatically include C:// disk as a location to decrypt. The file recovery tool will prepopulate the locations to scan, including connected data storage drives or network drives. Click Add folder if you wish to add additional locations.
In Options tab, you can choose to keep encrypted file copies. We recommend leaving this option selected, especially if you do not know if the decryption tool will work.
- Click Decrypt to start restoring MMDT files. You will see the progress in the Results tab. Here, you can see messages from the tool, such as whether the decryption procedure is successful, or you need to wait for an update.
You might also be informed that online key was used to encrypt your files. In such case, the decryption tool won't work for you, and the only way to recover your files is to use a data backup.
Meanings of decryptor's messages
The MMDT decryption tool might display several different messages after failed attempt to restore your files. You might receive one of the following messages:
Error: Unable to decrypt file with ID: [example ID]
This message typically means that there is no corresponding decryption key in the decryptor's database.
No key for New Variant online ID: [example ID]
Notice: this ID appears to be an online ID, decryption is impossible
This message informs that your files were encrypted with online key, meaning no one else has the same encryption/decryption key pair, therefore data recovery without paying the criminals is impossible.
Result: No key for new variant offline ID: [example ID]
This ID appears to be an offline ID. Decryption may be possible in the future.
If you were informed that an offline key was used, but files could not be restored, it means that the offline decryption key isn't available yet. However, receiving this message is extremely good news, meaning that it might be possible to restore your MMDT extension files in the future. It can take a few months until the decryption key gets found and uploaded to the decryptor. We recommend you to follow updates regarding the decryptable DJVU versions here. We strongly recommend backing up your encrypted data and waiting.
Report Internet crime to legal departments
Victims of MMDT Ransomware Virus should report the Internet crime incident to the official government fraud and scam website according to their country:
- In the United States, go to the On Guard Online website.
- In Australia, go to the SCAMwatch website.
- In Germany, go to the Bundesamt für Sicherheit in der Informationstechnik website.
- In Ireland, go to the An Garda Síochána website.
- In New Zealand, go to the Consumer Affairs Scams website.
- In the United Kingdom, go to the Action Fraud website.
- In Canada, go to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.
- In India, go to Indian National Cybercrime Reporting Portal.
- In France, go to the Agence nationale de la sécurité des systèmes d’information.
If you can't find an authority corresponding to your location on this list, we recommend using any search engine to look up "[your country name] report cyber crime". This should lead you to the right authority website. We also recommend staying away from third-party crime report services that are often paid. It costs nothing to report Internet crime to official authorities.
Another recommendation is to contact your country's or region’s federal police or communications authority.
Frequently Asked Questions
You can only open MMDT files if you have the decryption key, or if you were affected by offline encryption type.
To figure out whether you were affected by offline encryption, please go to C:/SystemID/PersonalID.txt and see if the string inside of it ends in t1. You can also try using Emsisoft Decryptor for STOP/DJVU.
Please follow the guidances provided by the official MMDT decryption tools and believe what they say. If they say it is impossible to decrypt, it really is so. There is no magic tool or human capable of decrypting your files hiding somewhere. Encryption is a technique created to be nearly impossible to decrypt without a special private key (held by the criminals).
We advise scanning with anti-virus, anti-malware, malware removal tools or software like RESTORO to eliminate virus damage on the system. If you do not trust using a single tool, try running one after another. However, we do not recommend keeping several security programs on a computer at once as they can interfere with each other's work.
Beware of fake MMDT decryption tools circulating around the web. Cyber criminals are uploading them to various shady websites, also might be promoting them via suspicious Youtube videos. These programs can infect your computer even more heavily (Trojans, miners, etc.). We suggest being extremely cautious around the web. If there will be an official STOP/DJVU decryption tool available, it will be widely discussed in public media.
Norbert Webb is the head of Geek’s Advice team. He is the chief editor of the website who controls the quality of content published. The man also loves reading cybersecurity news, testing new software and sharing his insights on them. Norbert says that following his passion for information technology was one of the best decisions he has ever made. “I don’t feel like working while I’m doing something I love.” However, the geek has other interests, such as snowboarding and traveling.