What is Tohj virus?
Tohj virus is a ransomware that attacks the victim’s computer by encrypting files and demanding a ransom for decrypting them. The ransomware attack can lead to data loss and financial losses. Tohj encrypts files, renames them by appending the .tohj extension, and creates files named “_readme.txt” containing the ransom demand message. For example, a file named “document.docx” will be renamed to “document.docx.tohj”, a “image.jpg” file to “image.jpg.tohj”, “invoice.pdf” to “invoice.pdf.tohj”, and so on.
Files encrypted by Tohj virus:
- What is Tohj virus?
- Remove Tohj virus (ransomware)
- Decrypt .tohj files
- Restore .tohj files
- Video Guide
Tohj ransomware is a malware that is a variant of STOP ransomware. Like other variants, it encrypts all files on the computer and then demands a ransom for decryption. This virus encrypts files using a strong encryption method, which eliminates the possibility of finding a key in any way. For each victim, Tohj uses a unique key with a small exception. If the virus cannot establish a connection with its command and control server (C&C) before starting the encryption process, then it uses an offline key. This key is the same for any victims, which makes it possible in some cases to decrypt files that were encrypted during the ransomware attack.
Tohj has the ability to encrypt files of any type, regardless of what is in them. But it skips files with the extension: .ini, .dll, .lnk, .bat, .sys and files named ‘_readme.txt’. Thus, the following common file types can be easily encrypted:
.wbz, .xlsm, .bkf, .xpm, .odb, .dazip, .wmd, .ff, .xyp, .wpd, .mef, .png, .wbk, .hkdb, .map, .odp, .der, .lrf, .snx, .zw, .ppt, .wmv, .asset, .xlsm, .mdbackup, .crw, .sid, .ysp, .p12, .x3d, .itm, .xml, .ntl, .sis, .xll, .doc, .wps, .ai, .wsc, .y, .vpp_pc, .ncf, .wp5, .bay, .vfs0, .lvl, .psk, .wbmp, .p7c, .csv, .cer, .zdb, .epk, .odc, .tor, .ws, .xmind, .mddata, .ybk, .xlsx, .mdf, .blob, .arch00, .indd, .wri, .rim, .avi, .gdb, .jpg, .pst, .mrwref, .fsh, .css, .pptx, .xbplate, .wsd, .docm, .fpk, .x, .litemod, .zip, .wsh, .m2, .r3d, .pdf, .txt, .xlsb, .t13, .pef, .wdb, .zabw, .bc7, .apk, .xls, .wav, .das, .sr2, .esm, .mlx, .xls, .wp6, .syncdb, .hkx, .wcf, .bar, .zip, .wpl, .kf, .upk, .bsa, .wps, .wpw, .xy3, wallet, .xxx, .xyw, .cas, .rofl, .xlgc, .vcf, .sum, .srw, .sb, .xwp, .layout, .wmv, .ztmp, .crt, .xbdoc, .wpt, .zif, .sie, .iwi, .odt, .raw, .wpd, .lbf, .wpe, .tax, .qic, .jpeg, .wpb, .wp7, .desc, .bkp, .sidn, .big, .orf, .xar, .mcmeta, .kdb, .xlk, .ptx, .wot, .rar, .1st, .dng, .rtf, .js, .wb2, .dxg, .wm, .webp, .erf, .xlsx, .mp4, .xmmap, .vtf, .wgz, .rwl, .m4a, .dmp, .pkpass, .wma, .pak, .wbm, .sidd, .dbf, .vpk, .srf, .0, .forge, .iwd, .3dm, .wpa, .pem, .wmo, .flv, .yal, .wbd, .ibank, .t12, .ods, .psd
Each file that has been encrypted will be renamed. This means the following. If the file was called ‘document.docx’, then after encryption, it will be named ‘document.docx.tohj’. Tohj virus can encrypt files located on all drives connected to the computer. Therefore, files located in network attached storage and external devices can also be encrypted. It encrypts file by file, when all the files in the directory are encrypted, it drops a new file in the directory, which is called ‘_readme.txt’. Below is the contents of this file.
This file is present in all directories with encrypted files. But the contents of this file are the same everywhere. This file contains a message from Tohj creators. In this message, the criminals report that all the files were encrypted and the only way to decrypt them is to buy a decryptor and key. Attackers demand a ransom of $490, if the victim does not pay the ransom within 72 hours, then the ransom will double to $980. Tohj authors left two email addresses that the victim must use to contact them. To confirm the possibility of decryption, criminals offer to decrypt one file that does not contain important information for free. But it’s obvious that there is no guarantee that even by paying the ransom, the victim will be able to decrypt all files that have been encrypted.
Text presented in the ransom note:
Don’t worry, you can return all your files!
All your files like pictures, 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.
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.
You can get and look video overview decrypt tool:
Price of private key and decrypt software is $980.
Discount 50% available if you contact us first 72 hours, that’s price for you is $490.
Please note that you’ll never restore your data without payment.
Check your e-mail “Spam” or “Junk” folder if you don’t get answer more than 6 hours.
To get this software you need write on our e-mail:
Reserve e-mail address to contact us:
Your personal ID:
Tohj authors scare victims by saying that encrypted files cannot be decrypted without paying a ransom. And unfortunately this is true, the contents of the files cannot be read while the files are encrypted, and a key and decryptor are needed to decrypt them.
Fortunately, there is a free decryptor (Tohj File Decrypt Tool) that can decrypt encrypted files in some cases. It can help victims to decrypt .tohj files for free. But in addition to the decryptor, the key is still necessary. As we reported above, the ransomware can use two types of keys. Only files encrypted with the offline key can be decrypted, and only after security researchers have obtained the offline key. Files that have been encrypted with so called ‘online key’ cannot yet be decrypted. In any case, there are several more universal methods for recovering encrypted files, which will be demonstrated below. It is very important to read the entire instruction manual carefully and make sure to understand it all. We advise you not to skip any steps, each of the steps is very important and must be completed by you. In order not to get confused and not miss an important point in the instructions, we recommend that you print this article or open it on your smartphone.
|Name||Tohj ransomware, Tohj file virus|
|Type||Ransomware, Crypto malware, File locker, Filecoder, Crypto virus|
|Ransom amount||$980 or $490 in Bitcoins|
|Detection Names||DropperX-gen [Drp], W32/Emotet.EKN.gen!Eldorado, UDS:DangerousObject.Multi.Generic, Win32.Trojan-Ransom.STOP.GK2CSE, Trojan:Win32/Sabsik.FL.B!ml, ML/PE-A + Troj/Krypt-QV, Malware-Cryptor.2LA.gen, W32.Trojan.Gen, Trojan.Win32.Save.a, Trojan.Win32.Convagent.4!c|
|Symptoms||Photos, documents and music won’t open. All of your files have a odd file extension appended to the filenames. Your file directories contain a ‘ransom note’ file that is usually a .html, .jpg or .txt file. Your desktop is locked with a message about How to pay to unlock your system.|
|Distribution methods||Phishing emails that contain malicious attachments. Exploit kits (cybercriminals use ransomware packaged in an ‘exploit kit’ that can find a vulnerability in Internet browser, Windows OS, PDF reader, Adobe Flash Player). Social media, such as web-based instant messaging programs. USB flash drives containing malware.|
|Removal||Tohj virus removal guide|
|Decryption||Tohj File Decrypt Tool|
How to remove Tohj virus (ransomware)
Before you start decrypting or recovering .tohj files, you need to remove Tohj ransomware and its autostart entries. This must be done since otherwise the ransomware may re-encrypt the restored files. You can stop the ransomware from working, as it is not difficult to do. Another option is to perform a full system scan using free malware removal tools capable of detecting and removing ransomware infection.
It is very important to scan the computer for malware, as security researchers found that spyware could be installed on the infected computer along with the Tohj ransomware. Spyware is a very dangerous security threat as it is designed to steal the user’s personal information such as passwords, logins, contact details, etc. If you have any difficulty removing the Tohj virus, then let us know in the comments, we will try to help you.
To remove Tohj ransomware, follow the steps below:
Kill Tohj virus
Press CTRL, ALT, DEL keys together.
Click Task Manager. Select the “Processes” tab, look for something suspicious that is the Tohj ransomware then right-click it and select “End Task” or “End Process” option. If your Task Manager does not open or the Windows reports “Task manager has been disabled by your administrator”, then follow the guide: How to Fix Task manager has been disabled by your administrator.
It is not difficult to detect a process related to the Tohj ransomware. When looking for a malicious process, pay attention to the process icon and its name. Most often, this ransomware has a process name in the following format: 4-characters.tmp.exe or 4-characters.exe. For example: 7533.tmp.exe, A4b1.exe, CD15.tmp.exe, 19b2.exe. The process name can also contain “(32 bit)”. If you do not find a process with a similar name in the list of processes, then most likely the Tohj ransomware has finished working. But keep in mind, if you do not remove the ransomware autostart entries, as demonstrated below, and do not delete its file, then after a while it may start again, and if it finds unencrypted files, immediately encrypt them.
Disable Tohj Start-Up
Select the “Start-Up” tab, look for something similar to the one shown in the example below, right click to it and select Disable.
Close Task Manager.
Delete Tohj Task
Type “Task Scheduler” in the search bar. Click Task Scheduler app in the search results. Click “Task Scheduler Library” in the left panel. On the right panel, right-click to “Time Trigger Task” and select Delete.
Close Task Scheduler.
Remove Tohj virus
Run Task Manager and select the “Start-Up” tab. Right click to the Tohj ransomware Start-Up entry and select Open File Location as shown below.
A directory containing one file will open in front of you, this file is the Tohj virus. It needs to be removed. If you try to delete it immediately, then you will not succeed, since this file is protected from deletion.
To delete this file, you need to do the following. Right-click on the file, select Properties. In the window that opens, select Security tab. Next, click the Advanced button below. A window will open as shown in the following example.
Click Disable inheritance. In the Block inheritance dialog box that opens, select the first item (Convert inherited permissions…) as shown below.
In the Permission entries list, select “Deny Everyone”, click Remove button and then OK. Close the file properties window. You should now be able to remove the Tohj virus. Right-click on the file and select Delete.
Scan computer for malware
We recommend using MalwareBytes which will completely remove the ransomware from your computer. This tool is an advanced malicious software removal program created by (c) Malwarebytes lab. It uses the world’s most popular antimalware technology. MalwareBytes Antimalware is able to help you remove ransomware, PUPs, trojans, worms, adware, toolbars, and other security threats from your computer for free.
MalwareBytes Anti-Malware can be downloaded from the following link. Save it on your Desktop.
Category: Security tools
Update: April 15, 2020
When the download is complete, close all software and windows on your personal computer. Open a directory in which you saved it. Double-click on the icon that’s named MBSetup such as the one below.
When the install begins, you will see the Setup wizard that will help you install Malwarebytes on your computer.
Once installation is done, you will see window such as the one below.
Now press the “Scan” button to perform a system scan with this tool for the Tohj ransomware and other security threats. This procedure can take quite a while, so please be patient. While the MalwareBytes program is scanning, you can see number of objects it has identified as threat.
When the scan get completed, it will display the Scan Results. When you’re ready, press “Quarantine” button.
Malwarebytes will now move the selected security threats to the Quarantine. After the process is complete, you may be prompted to restart your computer.
In order to be 100% sure that the computer no longer has the Tohj virus, we recommend using the Kaspersky virus removal tool (KVRT). It is free and easy to use. It can scan and remove ransomware, spyware, potentially unwanted applications, worms, trojans, adware and other malware. KVRT is powerful enough to find and uninstall malicious registry entries and files that are hidden on the machine.
Download Kaspersky virus removal tool from the following link. Save it to your Desktop.
Author: Kaspersky® lab
Category: Security tools
Update: March 5, 2018
When downloading is finished, double-click on the Kaspersky virus removal tool icon. Once initialization process is finished, you will see the KVRT screen as shown in the figure below.
Click Change Parameters and set a check near all your drives. Press OK to close the Parameters window. Next click Start scan button . KVRT tool will begin scanning the whole PC to detect the Tohj ransomware. This procedure can take some time, so please be patient.
When Kaspersky virus removal tool has completed scanning, it will open the Scan Results like below.
Review the results once the utility has finished the system scan. If you think an entry should not be quarantined, then uncheck it. Otherwise, simply click on Continue to begin a cleaning process.
How to decrypt .tohj files
All files with the ‘.tohj’ extension are encrypted. Their contents cannot be unlocked simply by removing this extension or completely changing the filename. To decrypt .tohj files, you need a decryptor. Fortunately, there is a free Tohj File Decrypt Tool that can decrypt .tohj files. Below we provide instructions on where to download and how to use Tohj File Decrypt Tool.
To decrypt .tohj files, use Tohj File Decrypt Tool
- Download Tohj File Decrypt Tool from the following link.
STOP Djvu decryptor
- Scroll down to ‘New Djvu ransomware’ section.
- Click the download link and save the ‘decrypt_STOPDjvu.exe’ file to your desktop.
- Run decrypt_STOPDjvu.exe, read the license terms and instructions.
- On the ‘Decryptor’ tab, using the ‘Add a folder’ button, add the directory or disk where the encrypted files are located.
- Click the ‘Decrypt’ button.
Tohj File Decrypt Tool is a free tool that allows everyone to decrypt .tohj files for free. At the moment, the decryptor can only decrypt files that have been encrypted with an offline key. Unfortunately, if the files were encrypted with an online key, then the free decryptor is completely useless. In this case, there is a chance to restore the encrypted files using alternative methods, which are described below.
How to find out which key was used to encrypt files
Since Tohj File Decrypt Tool only decrypts files encrypted with the offline key, each Tohj’s victim needs to find out which key was used to encrypt the files. Determining the type of key used is not difficult. Below we give two ways. Use any of them. We recommend using the second method, as it is more accurate.
Find out the type of key using ‘_readme.txt’ file
- Open the ransom demand message (‘_readme.txt’ file).
- Scroll down to the end of the file.
- There you will see a line with the text ‘Your personal ID’.
- Below is a line of characters that starts with ‘0574’ – this is your personal id.
Find out the type of key using ‘PersonalID.txt’ file
- Open disk C.
- Open directory ‘SystemID’.
- Open file named ‘PersonalID.txt’. This file lists ‘Personal ID’s that match the keys that the virus used to encrypt files.
The ‘Personal ID’ is not a key, it is an identifier related to a key that was used to encrypt files. If the ID ends with ‘t1’, then the files are encrypted with an offline key. If the ID does not end with ‘t1’, Tohj virus used an online key. If you could not figure out how to determine which key was used to encrypt files, then we can help. Just write a request here or in the comments below.
Tohj File Decrypt Tool : “No key for New Variant online ID”
If, when you try to decrypt .tohj files, Tohj File Decrypt Tool reports:
No key for New Variant online ID: *
Notice: this ID appears to be an online ID, decryption is impossible
It means that your files are encrypted with an ‘online key’ and their decryption is impossible, since only the vari authors have the key necessary for decryption. In this case, you need to use alternative methods listed below to restore the contents of encrypted files.
Tohj File Decrypt Tool : “No key for New Variant offline ID”
If, during decryption of .tohj files, Tohj File Decrypt Tool reports:
No key for New Variant offline ID: *t1
Notice: this ID appears be an offline ID, decryption MAY be possible in the future.
It means the following: your files are encrypted with an ‘offline key’, but the key itself has not yet been obtained by security researchers, in this case, you need to be patient and wait a while, in addition, you can also use alternative ways for recovering encrypted data.
If for some reason you were unable to decrypt the encrypted files, then We recommend to follow the news on our Facebook or YouTube channels. So you ‘ll know right away that it ‘s possible to decrypt .tohj files.
This video step-by-step guide will demonstrate How to use STOP Djvu decryptor to decrypt encrypted files.
How to restore .tohj files
As we already said, the Tohj File Decrypt Tool can only decrypt files encrypted using the so called ‘offline key’. What to do when files were encrypted with an online key? Even in this case, everyone has a chance to recover the contents of encrypted files. This is possible due to the existence of several alternative ways to restore files. Each of these methods does not require a decryptor and a unique key, which is in the hands of criminals. The only thing we strongly recommend that you perform (if you have not already done so) is to perform a full scan of the computer. You must be 100% sure that Tohj ransomware has been removed. To find and remove ransomware, use the free malware removal tools.
Recover .tohj files with ShadowExplorer
The Windows OS (10, 8, 7 , Vista) has one very useful feature, it makes copies of all files that have been modified or deleted. This is done so that the user can recover, if necessary, the previous version of accidentally deleted or damaged files. These copies of the files are called ‘Shadow copies’. One tool that can help you recover files from the Shadow copies is ShadowExplorer. It is very small tool and easy to use. Unfortunately, ransomware often delete Shadow copies, thus blocking this method of recovering encrypted files. Nevertheless, be sure to try this method.
Visit the following page to download the latest version of ShadowExplorer for MS Windows. Save it on your Microsoft Windows desktop or in any other place.
Category: Security tools
Update: September 15, 2019
After the downloading process is done, open a directory in which you saved it. Right click to ShadowExplorer-0.9-portable and select Extract all. Follow the prompts. Next please open the ShadowExplorerPortable folder as shown on the screen below.
Start the ShadowExplorer utility and then choose the disk (1) and the date (2) that you wish to recover the shadow copy of file(s) encrypted by the Tohj virus as displayed on the image below.
Now navigate to the file or folder that you wish to recover. When ready right-click on it and click ‘Export’ button like below.
This video step-by-step guide will demonstrate How to recover encrypted files using Shadow Explorer.
Use PhotoRec to restore .tohj files
Another alternative way to recover encrypted files is to use data recovery tools. We recommend using a program called PhotoRec. This tool is free and does not require installation. Below we will show in detail how to use it to restore encrypted files.
Download PhotoRec on your Windows Desktop by clicking on the following link.
Category: Security tools
Update: March 1, 2018
When downloading is done, open a directory in which you saved it. Right click to testdisk-7.0.win and choose Extract all. Follow the prompts. Next please open the testdisk-7.0 folder as shown in the following example.
Double click on qphotorec_win to run PhotoRec for MS Windows. It’ll open a screen as displayed in the figure below.
Select a drive to recover as shown on the screen below.
You will see a list of available partitions. Select a partition that holds encrypted documents, photos and music as displayed on the screen below.
Click File Formats button and choose file types to recover. You can to enable or disable the restore of certain file types. When this is done, click OK button.
Next, click Browse button to choose where restored photos, documents and music should be written, then click Search. We strongly recommend that you save the recovered files to an external drive.
Count of recovered files is updated in real time. All restored personal files are written in a folder that you have chosen on the previous step. You can to access the files even if the restore process is not finished.
When the recovery is finished, click on Quit button. Next, open the directory where restored personal files are stored. You will see a contents like below.
All recovered files are written in recup_dir.1, recup_dir.2 … sub-directories. If you’re looking for a specific file, then you can to sort your restored files by extension and/or date/time.
This video step-by-step guide will demonstrate How to recover encrypted files using PhotoRec.
How to protect your PC from Tohj ransomware
Most antivirus apps already have built-in protection system against the ransomware. Therefore, if your personal computer does not have an antivirus program, make sure you install it. As an extra protection, run the HitmanPro.Alert. All-in-all, HitmanPro.Alert is a fantastic tool to protect your computer from any ransomware. If ransomware is detected, then HitmanPro.Alert automatically neutralizes malware and restores the encrypted files. HitmanPro.Alert is compatible with all versions of MS Windows operating system from Windows XP to Windows 10.
Installing the HitmanPro Alert is simple. First you’ll need to download HitmanPro.Alert by clicking on the link below. Save it directly to your Microsoft Windows Desktop.
Category: Security tools
Update: March 6, 2019
When the download is done, open the file location. You will see an icon like below.
Double click the HitmanPro Alert desktop icon. When the tool is launched, you will be displayed a window where you can choose a level of protection, as shown on the screen below.
Now press the Install button to activate the protection.
To sum up
This guide was created to help all victims of Tohj ransomware virus. We tried to give answers to the following questions: how to remove ransomware; how to decrypt .tohj files; how to recover encrypted files; what is an online key and what is an offline key. We hope that the information presented in this manual has helped you.
If you have questions, then write to us, leaving a comment below. If you need more help with Tohj ransomware related issues, go to here.