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Cannot open hundreds  of pdfs

Posted on 2013-11-22
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Last Modified: 2013-11-26
Acrobat could not open ‘filename.pdf’ because it is either not a supported file type or because the file has been damaged (for example, it was sent as an email attachment and wasn’t correctly decoded).
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Question by:alafair
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by:Gary
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Could be a million and one reasons why.

Could you open them before?
Can you attach a sample pdf?
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by:alafair
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yes they were openable before, our company has been going paperless and scanning in all of our files to pdf this is a disaster if i cannot find a solution
BrennerFielder-5142612-02-01-201.pdf
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by:Gary
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Not openable or repairable - file contents look like junk
Run a full virus scan - do you have any problems with other files like Word, Excel etc?
Have you been infected with http://www.symantec.com/connect/blogs/ransomcrypt-thriving-menace
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Author Comment

by:alafair
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not that i know of just pdfs and only certains ones that were at the end of the fiscal year in April
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by:dlbrody69
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Ya, I tried everything and its corrupted for sure. where did you get this file from? was it converted from some other file format? I am attaching a known working one. Can you open this?
Sammy-s-Stay-at-Silvia-S.-s-Home.pdf
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by:tliotta
tliotta earned 150 total points
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Opening the original attached file (BrennerFielder-5142612-02-01-201.pdf) in Notepad shows that the content is not .PDF data. If the file was previously viewable through some .PDF viewer, then it has been corrupted (or encrypted/encoded) by something and the Symantec link seems to be a reasonable possibility. An infection wouldn't necessarily exist today, but the resulting mess could still be there.

It could also be any number of other things such as copying in binary mode to some server that uses a different encoding, then copying back in text mode. There's probably no good way to tell what has happened just by looking unless at least a few examples are available.

Tom
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by:Gary
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Are the files you are opening local or on a network?
When was the last time you were able to open them?
The crypolocker virus is fairly new. And has been causing a lot of problems in the past month and was not immediately detectable by AV software. An example that it doesn't matter who your are...
http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/nov/21/us-police-force-pay-bitcoin-ransom-in-cryptolocker-malware-scam
That is the reason I ask are other files presenting problems as it does 'attack' MS files
Are there any other PDF files on the same computer that are openable?

This very much sounds like a virus infection. Do you have a sysadmin? Do you have backups - I am guessing not.
My attempts at repairing the file resulted in the file is corrupted to the file requires a password.
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by:Giovanni Heward
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Try scanning a sample PDF with this.
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Threat Intelligence Starter Resources

Integrating threat intelligence can be challenging, and not all companies are ready. These resources can help you build awareness and prepare for defense.

 
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by:Giovanni Heward
Giovanni Heward earned 200 total points
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I scanned your sample and it unfortunately bears the CryptoLocker signature.

\temp\dist\CryptoUnLocker.exe BrennerFielder-5142612-02-01-201.pdf --detect

Open in new window

[+] Found a potential CryptoLocker file: BrennerFielder-5142612-02-01-201.pdf

If you don't have a backup, try using shadow explorer, if that fails the only realistic method available to recover your files is the decryption key, which unfortunately is only available from the malware author and requires the ransom to be paid.  If you want to know why decryption is "computationally infeasible", read http://www.experts-exchange.com/Software/Office_Productivity/Office_Suites/MS_Office/Q_28275170.html#a39606853

To pay the ransom and recover your files, read read http://www.experts-exchange.com/Security/Vulnerabilities/Q_28294767.html#a39651228

Preventative solutions are posted here http://www.experts-exchange.com/Storage/Misc/Q_28296724.html#a39657671
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by:alafair
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Is Cryplocker a virus?
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by:Gary
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Yes and no - its called Ransomware
Once it infects a computer it starts to encrypt files (mainly MS files like word, excel etc but pdf as well as others)
The only way to unecrypt them is to pay the ransom demanded for the unlock key.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ransomware_(malware)
http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/virus-removal/cryptolocker-ransomware-information

Your problem now is that you have probably passed the 3 day period in which you can buy the unlocker.
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Author Comment

by:alafair
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Thank you so much
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Author Comment

by:alafair
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I've requested that this question be closed as follows:

Accepted answer: 0 points for alafair's comment #a39678932

for the following reason:

was the first person to give me the reason this is happening. Not even Adobe could help me. So thank you.
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Assisted Solution

by:Giovanni Heward
Giovanni Heward earned 200 total points
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I would define CryptoLocker as trojan horse cryptoviral extortion hybrid ransomware.

To pay the ransom and recover your files, read http://www.experts-exchange.com/Security/Vulnerabilities/Q_28294767.html#a39651228.

Although your money may be better spent long term by investing the the preventative solutions proposed here http://www.experts-exchange.com/Storage/Misc/Q_28296724.html#a39657671
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Gary earned 150 total points
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I'll think you'll find I was the first person to tell you what the problem was.
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Author Comment

by:alafair
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Sorry i just noticed that multiple people helped me im so sorry how do i go back and give credit to all ?????
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by:Giovanni Heward
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@GaryC123; relax, we all know your great.  :-)
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