What is Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware
Balaclava is a ransomware-type family that has promoted multiple variations such as DavesSmith, Michael, and KEY0004 thus far. All of them encrypt files similarly – they scan your device for necessary files (images, videos, text files, documents, etc.) and retitle them with new extensions. For example, after successful encryption, the original 1.mp4 will change its name to 1.mp4.michael or 1.mp4.KEY0004 respectively. Earlier variations of the virus used .[email@example.com] and .firstname.lastname@example.org suffixes. To inform confused users, extortionists provide ransom information that is located in a note, that can be called either RECOVERY FILE.txt or HOW_TO_RECOVERY_FILES.txt on your desktop.
If you see this message - this means your files are now encrypted and are in a non-working state!
Now only we can help you recover.
If you are ready to restore the work - send us an email to the address email@example.com
In the letter, specify your personal identifier, which you will see below.
In the reply letter we will inform you the cost of decrypting your files.
Before payment you can send us 1 files for test decryption.
We will decrypt the files you requested and send you back.
This ensures that we own the key to recover your data.
The total file size should be no more than 2 MB,
the files should not contain valuable information (databases, backups, large Excel spreadsheets ...).
Email to contact us - firstname.lastname@example.org
YOUR PERSONAL ID :
If you see this message - this means your files are now encrypted and are in a non-working state! Now only we can help you recover.
If you are ready to restore the work - send us an email to the address email@example.com In the letter, specify your personal identifier, which you will see below. In the reply letter we will inform you the cost of decrypting your files.
Before payment you can send us 1-2 files for test decryption. We will decrypt the files you requested and send you back. This ensures that we own the key to recover your data. The total file size should be no more than 2 MB, the files should not contain valuable information (databases, backups, large Excel spreadsheets ...).
Email to contact us - firstname.lastname@example.org
YOUR PERSONAL ID :
To decrypt the locked data, you should send them an e-mail by attaching your personal identification. Then, you should pay a required fee that may vary significantly (from 100$ to 1000+). Luckily, you should not spend money on a ransom, because we will help you delete DavesSmith Ransomware from your system and decrypt the affected data for free.
How Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware infected your computer
- Download Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware Removal Tool
- Get decryption tool for .michael or .KEY0004 files
- Recover encrypted files with Stellar Data Recovery Professional
- Restore encrypted files with Windows Previous Versions
- Restore files with Shadow Explorer
- How to protect from threats like Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware
Download Removal Tool
To remove Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware completely, we recommend you to use Norton Antivirus from Symantec. It detects and removes all files, folders and registry keys of Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware and prevents future infections by similar viruses.
Alternative Removal Tool
To remove Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware completely, we recommend you to use SpyHunter 5 from EnigmaSoft Limited. It detects and removes all files, folders, and registry keys of Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware. The trial version of SpyHunter 5 offers virus scan and 1-time removal for FREE.
Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware files:
Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware registry keys:
How to decrypt and restore .michael or .KEY0004 files
Use automated decryptors
Download Kaspersky RakhniDecryptor
Use following tool from Kaspersky called Rakhni Decryptor, that can decrypt .michael or .KEY0004 files. Download it here:
There is no purpose to pay the ransom because there is no guarantee you will receive the key, but you will put your bank credentials at risk.
Dr.Web Rescue Pack
Famous antivirus vendor Dr. Web provides free decryption service for the owners of its products: Dr.Web Security Space or Dr.Web Enterprise Security Suite. Other users can ask for help in the decryption of .michael or .KEY0004 files by uploading samples to Dr. Web Ransomware Decryption Service. Analyzing of files will be performed free of charge and if files are decryptable, all you need to do is purchase a 2-year license of Dr.Web Security Space worth $120 or less. Otherwise, you don’t have to pay.
If you are infected with Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware and removed it from your computer you can try to decrypt your files. Antivirus vendors and individuals create free decryptors for some crypto-lockers. To attempt to decrypt them manually you can do the following:
Use Stellar Data Recovery Professional to restore .michael or .KEY0004 files
- Download Stellar Data Recovery Professional.
- Click Recover Data button.
- Select type of files you want to restore and click Next button.
- Choose location where you would like to restore files from and click Scan button.
- Preview found files, choose ones you will restore and click Recover.
Using Windows Previous Versions option:
- Right-click on infected file and choose Properties.
- Select Previous Versions tab.
- Choose particular version of the file and click Copy.
- To restore the selected file and replace the existing one, click on the Restore button.
- In case there is no items in the list choose alternative method.
Using Shadow Explorer:
- Download Shadow Explorer program.
- Run it and you will see screen listing of all the drives and the dates that shadow copy was created.
- Select the drive and date that you want to restore from.
- Right-click on a folder name and select Export.
- In case there are no other dates in the list, choose alternative method.
If you are using Dropbox:
- Login to the DropBox website and go to the folder that contains encrypted files.
- Right-click on the encrypted file and select Previous Versions.
- Select the version of the file you wish to restore and click on the Restore button.
How to protect computer from viruses, like Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware, in future
1. Get special anti-ransomware software
Use ZoneAlarm Anti-Ransomware
Famous antivirus brand ZoneAlarm by Check Point released a comprehensive tool, that will help you with active anti-ransomware protection, as an additional shield to your current protection. The tool provides Zero-Day protection against ransomware and allows you to recover files. ZoneAlarm Anti-Ransomware is compatible with all other antiviruses, firewalls, and security software except ZoneAlarm Extreme (already shipped with ZoneAlarm Anti-Ransomware) or Check Point Endpoint products. The killer features of this application are: automatic file recovery, overwrite protection that instantly and automatically recovers any encrypted files, file protection that detects and blocks even unknown encryptors.
2. Back up your files
As an additional way to save your files, we recommend online backup. Local storages, such as hard drives, SSDs, flash drives or remote network storages can be instantly infected by the virus once plugged in or connected to. Balaclava (DavesSmith) Ransomware uses some techniques to exploit this. One of the best services and programs for easy automatic online backup is iDrive. It has the most profitable terms and simple interface. You can read more about iDrive cloud backup and storage here.
3. Do not open spam e-mails and protect your mailbox
Malicious attachments to spam or phishing e-mails is most popular method of ransomware distribution. Using spam filters and creating anti-spam rules is good practice. One of the world leaders in anti-spam protection is MailWasher Pro. It works with various desktop applications, and provides very high level of anti-spam protection.