Understanding Dutan ransomware

According to researches, ransomware of DJVU family is making its presence feel since December 2018. DJVU ransomware family has a new feather in its cap! Developers called it – Dutan ransomware! This malicious crypto virus, alike its cousins follow the same methodology and motive. Let us understand in detail, the menace caused by .dutan file virus.

Dutan ki photo

Once in the system, .dutan ransomware immediately searches for the targeted files. These files are easily found on any PCs these day, it includes, audio-video files, images, documents & backup files. Hence, we can say that .jpeg, .pdf, .html, .docx, .mp4, .mpeg are a few favourite extensions of Dutan ransomware.

Once these files are located in the affected system, it initiates the file encryption process. Under this process, malware makes the files unreadable by appending a unique extension to the filenames. .dutan will be attached if your files are infected by Dutan virus. In addition, it also generates a ransom – demanding message in each folder having corrupted files. It is basically a text file, which notifies you about the ransomware attack. Furthermore, it assists you with the steps to enable the decryption key for you.

Scroll down to find quick and easy removal steps for .dutan file virus.

Threat Summary

Name Dutan Virus
Type Ransomware
Category Malware
Targeted OS Windows
Targeted Bowser Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox

Distribution Technique

Dutan Ransomware – New strain of DJVU ransomware family. Alike its cousins, it propagates via the most famous gateway i.e. spam campaigns. Under such attacks, an e-mail is sent, with a word document or PDF attachment. It looks legitimate however, the danger lies deep within the content/attachment. Once opened on the targeted system, the files trigger the macros of .dutan. At times, instead of attachments, a hyperlink is provided within the content of e-mail. Once clicked, they might lead you to certain questionable websites.

Users, have you heard about Trojans? This malicious program is designed by cyber criminals to carry out malicious activities. Once it makes it backdoor entry, it opens gateways for other malicious payloads.

To conclude with, there are two major reasons for such computer infections, lack of proper knowledge and reckless behavior. Hence, install a good antivirus in your system & scan on regular basis.

Even if you feel that your system has been trapped by Dutan ransomware, follow the below steps to remove Dutan ransomware.

Threat Behavior

The moment, Dutan virus infiltrates your system, it begins the malicious activities. Typically, .dutan file extension blocks the access to your files encrypting them. It gains the access of your system through the malicious file attachments in spam e-mails. Once, it infiltrates the system, it appends ‘.dutan’ extension to the encrypted filenames. For example, ‘Apple.jpeg’ will be renamed as ‘Apple.jpeg.dutan’. The encryption algorithm used by this malicious program is strong and generates a unique decryption key for every .dutan file. This key is stored on the server of Dutan ransomware developers. After successful file encryption, you can no longer open/read your files. For Dutan data recovery, you are bound to purchase the decryption key by the hackers. Simultaneously, this devastating software creates a ransom note file named – ‘_readme.txt’. Every time you try to open your virus encrypted files, the created ransom – demanding note will be displayed on your screen. The ransom note provides a link which enables you to download the decryption tool.


Ransom Note (1)

As mentioned earlier, the powerful algorithm makes it next to impossible to decrypt all files manually. Decryption tool or key is what you will need for data recovery. However, getting the decryption key is not an easy task! Stored on hacker’s serve, it is only exchanged for large amount of ransom.

If you do not want to get trapped in such scams, focus on the steps to remove Dutan ransomware from your system. Undoubtedly, it is a challenging task without the key. However not impossible!

Removal guidelines for Dutan ransomware

STEP A: Reboot your system to Safe Mode

Windows 7/ Vista/ XP

  1. Click on Windows icon present in the lower left corner of the computer screen.
  2. Select and click  Restart.
  3. When the screen goes blank, Keep tapping  F8  Key until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
  4. With the help of arrow keys on keyboard, Select Safe Mode with Networking  option from the list and press the Enter Key. The system will then restart to Safe Mode with Networking.

5 Click on the username and enter the password (if any).

Windows 10 / Windows 8

  1. Press and hold the Shift Key and simultaneously click on the windows icon present in the lower left corner of your computer screen.
  2. While the Shift key is still pressed click on the Power button and then click on Restart.
  3. Now select Troubleshoot → Advanced options → Startup Settings.
  4. When the Startup Settings screen appears which is the first screen to appear after restart, select and click on Enable Safe Mode with Networking. The system will then restart to Safe Mode with Networking.
  5. Click on the username and enter the password.

STEP B: Delete the suspicious file from Configuration Settings

  1. Type “Msconfig” in search box / Run Box, select it and press Enter.
  2. Click on “Services” Tab and click on “Hide all Microsoft services”.
  3. Select Dutan ransomware from the list of remaining services and disable it by removing the tick mark from the checkbox and click on Apply button.

Windows 7

  1. Click on the next tab – “Startup”.
  2. Find any blank or suspicious entry or the entry with Dutan ransomware mentioned and remove the check mark.
  3. Click on Apply button and then click on OK.

Windows 10

  1. Click on the next tab – “Startup”.
  2. Take the mouse cursor to ‘Open task Manager‘ link and click on it.  This opens the Task Manager window.
  3. Find any blank or suspicious entry or the entry with Dutan ransomware mentioned and click on it.
  4. Then click on Disable button.

STEP C: Remove malicious file from Command Prompt

Once the system starts, ensure to use an account with administrative privilege to access Safe Mode with Command Prompt.

After the user enters admin credentials, Command prompt window is displayed wherein you are entitled to enter the below commands:

  1. Type the command “sc delete Dutan ransomware” in the command prompt and press Enter.
  2. Type “exit” to exit the command prompt and restart the system in safe mode with command prompt.

STEP D: Restore the system files & folders

Method 1 using Control Panel

  1. Click on the ‘Start’ button on the taskbar. This will open the Start menu.
  2. Click on the ‘Control Panel’ button in the Start menu. This will open the control panel window.
  3. In the Control Panel window, click on the ‘View by:’ button on the top right. Select the Large Icon option
  4. In the control Panel window click on the ‘Recovery Icon’. This will open a window that will ask ‘Restore the computer to an earlier point in time’.
  5. Click on the ‘Open system restore’ button. This will open the ‘system restore ’window where you need to click on the Next Button.
  6.  Select the restore point that is prior the infiltration of Dutan ransomware. After doing that, click Next.
  7. This will open the ‘Confirm your restore point’ dialog box. Click on Finish button. This will restore your system to a previous restore point before your system was infected by Dutan ransomware.


Method 2 using Command Prompt

  1. Type cmd in the search box and click on the command prompt to open the Command Prompt window. box and clicking on it.
  2. Once the Command Prompt window shows up, enter cd restore and click Enter.(Ensure that you in the system32 directory of Windows folder in C Drive)
  3. Now type rstrui and press Enter again.
  4. When a new window shows up, click Next and select your restore point that is prior the infiltration of Dutan ransomware. After doing that, click Next.
  5. This will open the ‘Confirm your restore point’ dialog box. Click on Finish button. This will restore your system to a previous restore point before your system was infected by Dutan ransomware.


  1. Type ‘Rstrui’ in the search box present on the task bar. This will open the System restore dialog box.

Continue to follow steps 4 & 5 of Method 2 to restore the System Files and settings.

Tips to prevent your system from Dutan ransomware

  1. Keeping the Operating System Updated- In order to remain protected and avoid such infections, it is recommended to keep your Operating System updated by enabling the automatic update on your system. The systems with outdated or older versions of Operating System become an easy target for the attackers.
  2. Resist clicking on spam emails – One of the major techniques used for malware distribution is forwarding spam emails to the user. The system gets infected as soon as the user clicks on the attachment. These mails appear to be genuine, so be aware and resist falling for these tricks.
  3. Keep an eye on third party installations- It is quite important that you take due care while installing any third party applications for they are major source of such infections. Such malware programs come bundled with the free applications thereby requiring the user to remain cautious.
  4. Regular periodical backup- In order to keep your data and files safe, it is recommended to take regular back up of all your data and files either on an external drive or cloud.
  5. Use Anti-Virus Protection- We strongly recommend the use of antivirus protection/internet security in your PC like Vipre and Kaspersky so that it remains safe.
  6. Enable the Ad Blocker/Popup Blocker in your browser- Enabling the popup blocker/ ad blocker in your chosen browser will help you to stay protected from annoying adware.
Virus Removal Guidelines