Decryption Tool Released for DarkSide Ransomware

The Darkside ransomware has caused major problems for businesses over the last six months or so – but now a free decryptor has stopped it in its tracks.

The cybersecurity company Bitdefender has released a free decryptor tool that can unlock files that have been encrypted by the DarkSide ransomware. First appearing in August 2020, DarkSide uses the “ransomware as a service (RaaS) model, with cybercriminal groups applying for the ransomware and receiving a copy, which they then distribute via their chosen methods. These ransomware gangs tend to target big businesses and public-sector organisations rather than home users, in the hope of extracting big ransoms; in this instance ransoms range from $200,000 to $2,000,000. Like other RaaS, DarkSide exfiltrates data as well as encrypting it, providing more of a threat to targets. Where the target doesn’t pay, DarkSide operators leak sensitive data that has been stolen, uploading it publicly.

Bitdefender’s decryption tool will allow companies affected by the DarkSide ransomware to restore their files if they weren’t able to recover them via a backup. The group behind DarkSide claim that the decryption tool will only work on some infected systems, while Bitdefender are confident it will work on all versions of the ransomware that have infected Windows machines.

The DarkSide ransomware decryption tool from Bitdefender is available for free from their website. Once downloaded and launched, it will begin scanning your computer for encrypted files, before listing them as it finds them. Once you have decrypted the files, you can go ahead and delete the encrypted ones.

Darkside Ransomware