Too often stories about ransomware infections have unhappy endings.
On many occasions, home users and businesses find themselves in the distressing position of finding themselves with their files encrypted weighing up the rights and wrongs of paying Bitcoins to a gang of anonymous extortionists to recover their data.
So it's good to share some good news, which should provide some cheer and hope to victims of versions of TeslaCrypt, one of the most notorious instances of ransomware.
As researchers at ESET describe, the ransomware gang behind TeslaCrypt seems remarkably happy to help without demanding payment:
"One of ESET’s analysts contacted the group anonymously, using the official support channel offered to the ransomware victims by the TeslaCrypt’s operators, and requested the universal master decryption key.
Surprisingly, they made it public.
This allowed ESET to create a free decrypting tool promptly, which is able to unlock files affected by all variants of this ransomware."
I don't like to say much positive about cybercrime gangs, but it seems like on this occasion they provided some excellent customer service! And, by crikey, they even said sorry!
The smart folks at ESET were able to use the information provided to build a TeslaCrypt decryption tool (with a funky ANSI.SYS-style logo - nice work guys!)
More details of the decryption tool can be found in this ESET support knowledgebase article.