Free decryptor key for REvil/Sodinokibi ransomware released

The key was made possible thanks to a collaboration between law enforcement and Bitdefender

Cyber security firm Bitdefender has collaborated with a law enforcement agency to create a free decryptor for REvil/Sodinokibi ransomware.

Researchers at the company worked with an unnamed agency to release a free, universal decryptor key capable of unlocking the data of any organizations affected by the ransomware, according to a blog post.

The company said that the tool will help victims encrypted by REvil ransomware to restore their files and recover from attacks made before July 13, 2021. This date was when parts of REvil’s infrastructure went offline, leaving infected victims who had not paid the ransom unable to recover their encrypted data.

Bitdefender said that the investigation into the ransomware gang is “ongoing” and would not be able to comment on details related to this case until authorized by the lead investigating law enforcement partner.

“Both parties believe it is important to release the universal decryptor before the investigation is completed to help as many victims as possible,” the firm said in a statement.

Researchers warned that new REvil attacks are imminent after the ransomware gang’s servers and supporting infrastructure recently came back online after a two-month hiatus.

“We urge organizations to be on high alert and to take necessary precautions,” the researchers added.

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REvil is regarded as a ransomware as a service (RaaS) operator, mostly likely based in a country in Eastern Europe, or Russia. The gang surfaced in 2019 as a successor of the now-defunct GandCrab ransomware. REvil is one of the most prolific examples of ransomware on the dark web as affiliates have targeted thousands of organizations worldwide.

The affiliates encrypt data before demanding huge ransoms, sometimes up to $70 million in exchange for a decryptor key.

Victims of REvil ransomware can download the new decryption tool for free to recover their data from Bitdefender’s website. A step-by-step tutorial on how to use the REvil decryption tool is available here.

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