Dharma ransomware family has a new feather in its cap

The arsenal of this notorious ransomware is getting better day by day. The latest edition. [[email protected]].wal Virus is no different in executing the mal intentions of its creators.  As always, the targeted operating system is Windows.


The continuous evolution of technology has forced the mal practitioners to introduce dangerous code & protocols that go unnoticed from innocent users. Ideally, the word “Innocent” should not be used here! The users who like to deviate from following the ethical protocols are the primary targets of the unprincipled hackers. How? Let us see! We will take the example of this latest malware and will try to explore and recreate the attack scene!

People always look for shortcuts! They can even be the digital ways to elude from putting a weight on your pockets! Torrents, Cheap porn sites, freely available software sites are the few examples one like to explore in this rush!

The seeds of a malware are carefully planted on such websites to frame the honey trap for the lurking users! The moment a connection is established followed by a wrong click on the website, these dangerous codes come in the existence with a silent switch and without the knowledge of the users, and they spread in the system.

Apart from these websites, the other notorious way known for the spread of [[email protected]].wal Virus is through File transfer over unsecured connections or via drives.

These malware show the qualities of a true master of disguise once it enters the system. They have their own set of rules to ensure their presence on a connecting network as well! It could be a data transfer request, the contact list of email client or even your favorite social networking list, they are fined tuned to evade security protocols and journey to their selective destinations.

The moment [[email protected]].wal Virus establishes its identity in an affected system, it hunts for popular extensions that majorly represent user specific information.

Threat Behavior

To show its unethical presence and set the fear in the mind of users, it encrypts the file content with gibberish entries making the content unreadable by various popular editors. The reason for using the unidentified crypto language to garble the user data is simple! Let the user in a confused state of mind to look for the solution. The extension used on these encrypted files is [email protected]].wal.

It uses .wal file extension

Apart from encrypting the files, it also offers a solution to the deranged users. It asks for a ransom (in form of payments and bitcoins) from the users to decrypt the sensitive information. After the encryption of the files/ documents, the ransom note ‘FILES ENCRYPTED.txt’ will be created in the victim’s system.

Ransom Note for DecryptDocs

Many of the users, who now feel sorry, fall in the trap set by this expert marksman and end up paying to the demands. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee to the cure offered and the information may never be retrieved in many cases.

Let us have a look at the threat summary to the pernicious [[email protected]].wal Virus:

Threat Summary:

  • Name: .wal Files Virus
  • Type: Ransomware, Cryptovirus
  • Extensions: [[email protected]].wal
  • Ransom: $500 – $1500 (Bitcoins)
  • Ransomware Family: Dharma Ransomware
  • Distribution Method: Spam Emails with malicious Attachments
  • Ransomware Note: FILES ENCRYPTED.txt

How to Remove [[email protected]].wal  Ransomware from my System

STEP A: Remove the services installed by [[email protected]].wal  Ransomware from the System using Safe mode with Command Prompt

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 Command Prompt from the list and press the Enter Key. The system will then restart to Safe Mode with Command Prompt.
  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 Command Prompt. The system will then restart to Safe Mode with Command Prompt.
  5. Click on the username and enter the password.

STEP B: Restore your system files and settings

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 [dec[email protected]].wal virus 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 [[email protected]].wal virus


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 [dec[email protected]].wal virus 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 [[email protected]].wal virus.


  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 computer system from getting infected –

  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 Hitman Pro 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