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All files have turned into .enc files and can't access them!

By Grimrocker ยท 7 replies
Oct 4, 2010
  1. Hello,
    I recently opened an e-mail attachment that was sent to me and from then on all the files in my hard drive have turned into .enc files (encrypted) and I cannot access them anymore. I am using a XP Professional edition OS. So after a lotta failed attempts to fix this I re-installed my OS and though the system drive looks clean those darn .enc files still remain. I had so many important word, excel and pdf documents which I'm not able to access. I read in google that the .enc files are just encrypted and compressed but they are still there; only they don't seem to open. Any help on retrieving those files? Is there any software that I can use to decrypt them?
  2. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,335   +36

    Do you literally mean all the files? Files you have created? Operating system files? It sounds like it personal files with extensions like .doc, .xlr and .pdf, not the OS files.

    Question: when you use the usual double-click to open one of these files, what happens? What message are you getting? Something like 'can't open this file type'? Have you actually gone into the program that created the files and tried to bring it up in that- such as opening Word> File> Select the file to open?

    The ENC file type is primarily associated with 'BlackIce Evidence Log File'. Check you programs and see if you have BlackICE PC Protection installed. That encrypts as soon as it's installed. could this have been a part of the attachment you opened? Also check for NetworkIce.

    Althought this is the main use of this extension, it is not the only one and opening the files will depend on what encrypted them originally and determining if they are corrupt or recoverable.

    It's too bad you did the reinstall because you might have been able to do a System restore to date before you opened the attachment.

    I'd like you to run just this online AV scan- get an idea if it's malware and removable:

    Run Eset NOD32 Online AntiVirus scan HERE
    1. Tick the box next to YES, I accept the Terms of Use.
    2. Click Start
    3. When asked, allow the Active X control to install
    4. Disable your current Antivirus software. You can usually do this with its Notification Tray icon near the clock.
    5. Click Start
    6. Make sure that the option "Remove found threats" is Unchecked, and the option "Scan unwanted applications" is checked
    7. Click Scan
    8. Wait for the scan to finish
    9. Re-enable your Antivirus software.
    10. A logfile is created and located at C:\Program Files\EsetOnlineScanner\log.txt. Please include this on your post.

    It may be possible to download and install a file reader that will open .enc files. If the file does not open in the reader, there is a possibility that the file is corrupted. If the file opens in the reader, there is a possibility that the program with which the file was created is corrupted or is otherwise malfunctioning.
    But I'd like to do the scan first and paste the log in next reply..
  3. Grimrocker

    Grimrocker TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    Hey Bobbye thanks for replying.

    No I don't mean all the files including the OS files. All the MS Office docs like word, ppt, xls were affected. Even all the installers that I had too.Plus all the movie files were totally gone. I think the only ones that weren't affected were the music files.

    When I double-click on those .enc files I get the message 'can't open this file type'? I don't know what actually created those files so I don't know which program to use to open them. Yes when I change the .enc extension to .doc and open in notepad or word, all I see is some gibberish.

    I don't have any blackice pc protection installed. Maybe my pc was affected with this application when I tried to open the email attachment.

    So now that it has encrypted all these files do I have to install it again to decrypt them? I forgot to mention I tried using some decrypting programs to access my files but it didn't work. I tried Stuffit and Primasoft encryption but they didn't help.

    I tried the ESET online scanner like you said but it didn't come up with anything so I'm stuck with nothing here. Here's the log file though:

    ESETSmartInstaller@High as downloader log:
    all ok
    # version=7
    # OnlineScannerApp.exe=
    # OnlineScanner.ocx=
    # api_version=3.0.2
    # EOSSerial=498ec1819443914496608ed05e4cc959
    # end=finished
    # remove_checked=false
    # archives_checked=true
    # unwanted_checked=true
    # unsafe_checked=false
    # antistealth_checked=true
    # utc_time=2010-10-05 12:21:04
    # local_time=2010-10-05 05:51:04 (+0530, India Standard Time)
    # country="United States"
    # lang=1033
    # osver=5.1.2600 NT Service Pack 2
    # compatibility_mode=1024 16777215 100 0 154930 154930 0 0
    # compatibility_mode=1538 16774118 20 3 5572 114836077 0 0
    # compatibility_mode=8192 67108863 100 0 5196 5196 0 0
    # scanned=24759
    # found=0
    # cleaned=0
    # scan_time=1880

    Any other suggestions?
  4. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,335   +36

    I had a thought last night- it might be the simplest of all> if it works:

    Go to the Control Panel> Folder Options> File Types tab> first look through the list and see if ENC is listed. If it is, you will need to reassign all of the file types to 'open with' the appropriate program. And if it is not: find each of the descriptions that would normally be .doc, .xls, .ppt and any other extensions that are from this same grouping:

    Highlight the file description> Click on Change> set the open with to the appropriate program.

    Example: Highlight Microsoft Power Point Presentation> Click on Change> Choose from the appropriate list of programs that comes up> in this case Microsoft Power Point Viewer> Confirm is asked> When finished> Apply> OK
    If the program is not listed on the screen that comes up, click on Browse and look for the program.

    Use this same path for each of the file types that you cannot open. When you have reassigned all of the files types you need, delete the .enc extension.

    Changing the extension on a document itself isn't working because your system doesn't have the file extension assigned to it. Take a look at other files in the list and make sure you reassign all of the file with the .enc extension.

    It's worth a try! I was eating a Milky Way last night when I got one of those moments where an idea comes out of nowhere. but I had shut down for the night. Let me know.
  5. Grimrocker

    Grimrocker TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    Oh man that idea you had was really a good one infact I kept wondering why I didn't come up with that :) but alas it didn't work :(

    I did find .enc extension in folder options>file types tab, so I did as you said and changed all the appropriate file extensions to open with their respective applications and deleted the enc extension. But still had no changes. Infact when I change a .enc extension of a file that was supposed to open with Word to .doc, it does open with Word but it's some scrambled characters.

    Like I said I think these files are already encrypted with some godknowswhat application and I can't seem to decrypt them. Should I still hold on to those files? Are they gone for good?:confused::confused::confused:
  6. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,335   +36

    If these files have actually been encrypted, they are going to be lost to you. But it's is very unusual for any type of malware to encrypt files, rendering them useless.

    Is it possible that these files were encrypted by either the owner or another user on this system? Were these all files you created originally?
  7. Grimrocker

    Grimrocker TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    As far as I know my brother who is the only other person using the system did not encrypt them, and since the problems started after the mail attachment was opened I reckon it's gotta be some virus. All the existing word, pdf, excel files were pre-existing so the virus did not create any new enc files. Unfortunately the system was running without any antivirus software and my brother didn't want to waste time installing them and doing a scan. So he completely re-installed the OS which was not right. So yeah then I guess these files are lost. Anyways thanks for your help. Bye.
  8. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,335   +36

    Lots of unknown here> If there has not been an AV running, expect a malware takeover.

    I do wonder though- is this your brother's computer?
    In any event, I am closing the thread and considering it 'resolved.'
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