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How to Recover Data from USB Shortcut Virus?

Published By Mohit Jha
Tej Pratap Shukla
Approved By Tej Pratap Shukla
Published On September 19th, 2023
Reading Time 7 Minutes Reading

Summary: Want to know how to recover data from USB shortcut virus? This article will tell you how to recover shortcut files on USB with both manual and automatic solutions.

List of SolutionsHide

User Query:-

“All the files that I had stored on my USB are not visible now. Only a shortcut of these files is visible and I can’t even open them. All those files are very important to me as I have been saving them for the past year. I guess they are infected by the Shortcut virus. Can you please suggest a method to recover virus Infected files from USB and also how to avoid it in the future?”

As we can understand from the query above, it becomes a problem when a virus, particularly a Shortcut Virus, corrupts your data. They are a combination of Trojan and worm that enters your USB at random and prevents you from accessing your important files and folders. The users’ files and folders are replaced by shortcuts with identical names. These shortcut viruses commonly attack USB pen drives, external hard drives, and SD memory cards.

What is the source of this virus? This is covered later in the blog. First, let’s look at how the user’s files are  recover pen drive data from virus.

What is a Shortcut Virus?

Shortcut viruses are malicious programs that hide your files and folders and replace them with shortcuts. This type of virus mainly attacks removable storage devices such as USB flash drives, external hard drives, etc.

However, this virus is very dangerous and can avoid detection by antivirus software. So, when an infected device is connected to your computer, it also affects your computer. When you open an infected file on your computer, the virus can be exposed to other programs and then spread to the operating system. Additionally, shortcut viruses can spread through website downloads and email attachments.

Where Do These Shortcut Viruses Come From?

Last but not least, it is also important to know where these viruses come from. So that you can be aware of the origin of this virus so that you can avoid it next time.

A USB shortcut virus can originate from one of the following sources:

  • USB Drive: If you transfer a file from an infected flash drive to an uninfected one, there is a good possibility that the virus will also be transferred to the uninfected drive.
  • Computer or Laptop: If you insert a USB drive into an infected PC, the drive may get infected with a shortcut virus.
  • Internet:- It is never a good idea to save data from dubious websites to your hard drive. Always run any items you download through reputable antivirus software.

Methods to Recover Data from USB Shortcut Virus

There are two ways to recover files infected by virus shortcuts.

# Restore Files from Shortcut Virus with CMD

Command Prompt, abbreviated as CMD, works as a command-line interpreter. It can run many commands to change operating settings or fix problems with your computer. This method uses the attrib command to restore virus-infected shortcut files from a USB drive. You can use this solutions by following these steps:

  • Connect the USB drive to your computer and press Win + R to open the Run window.
  • Type cmd in the text box and press Shift + Ctrl + Enter to run the command prompt as an administrator.
  • Type the USB drive letter and press Enter. For example, if my USB drive letter is H, I need to type H:.
  • Type del *.ink and press Enter to delete the shortcut file on the USB drive.
  • Type the attrib -s -r -h *.* /s /d and click the Enter.

File attributes can be set with the atrib command to ensure the security of files on disk. After running all the commands, your files will be recovered, and you can check them on the disk.

Automatic Solution to Recover Data from USB Shortcut Virus

You can use the USB Drive Data Recovery, which is a completely safe and reliable data recovery solution, to recover files lost due to virus damage to shortcuts. This software allows you to recover unlimited files from damaged USB drives or internal or external hard drives.

Download Now Purchase Now

This program will quickly restore files and folders to their original locations before they become infected with viruses. Just follow these quick and easy steps to recover any data lost, corrupted, or deleted due to a shortcut virus. It recover shortcut files from USB flash drive that has been corrupted, erased, or formatted. This application can recover data from damaged USB drive in a variety of formats, including DOCX, XLSX, PPTX, PDF, JPEG, PNG, MP3, MP4, and and others.

Also Read: How to Recover Data from Kingston Pen Drive?

Few Steps to Recover Virus Infected Files from USB Drive

Follow the steps to understand how to use the tool:

Step 1: Download the tool on your system and navigate to the pen drive in the software interface.

Pen Drive Data Recovery Tool

Step 2: Select the Scan or Formatted Scan option. Scan option to recover deleted files from USB after format

Select the Scan or Formatted Scan

Step 3: Following the scan, the tool will preview all of the data from the pen drive, including the deleted data.

preview all of the data

Step 4: To recover data from pen drive shortcut virus, choose the files you require and click Save to recover data pen drive.

save all data

How to Remove Virus Shortcuts from USB Drive?

After successfully recovering USB files, you need to consider how to prevent virus shortcuts from infecting your files again. This section provides various solutions to help you remove virus shortcuts from USB drives.

Fix 1: Format the with File Explorer

This is the easiest way to remove viruses. You can format a disk in several ways.

  • Press Win+E to open File Explorer.
  • Select the PC  in the left pane and locate your USB drive.
  • Right-click the USB pen drive and choose Format from the context menu.
  • You have to select the correct file system, adjust the volume indicator, and check the Quick Format option.

Quick Format

  • Press the “Start” Option to format the USB drive.

Fix 2: Delete Suspicious Registry Entries

You can remove virus shortcuts by deleting suspicious registry entries. But remember that the Windows registry is very important for the stable operation of your computer. Any incorrect changes can cause permanent damage to your computer. Therefore, before proceeding to the next step, you should backup your registry keys to avoid errors.

  • Press the Windows + key and type Registry Editor in the search box.
  • Pick the Enter key button to open Registry Editor window.
  • Next, Go to the HKEY_CURRENT_USER > Software > Microsoft > Windows > Current Version > Run.

Current Version

  • You can check the subkeys in the right pane and remove the suspicious ones like oswcamszas, OUzzckky, etc.
  • You can restart your computer for the changes to take full effect.

Wrapping Up

Shortcut virus becomes a pain for the users as they are neither able to see them or access them on the user’s USB. It becomes highly crucial for users to remove them and recover data from USB shortcut viruses that were deleted because of them. Thus, in this article, the methods to recover pen drive data from virus discussed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: How do I remove the shortcut virus from my pen drive?

If you want to know how to recover shortcut files from USB flash drive and pen drives, follow these steps:

Q2: Does this tool support recovery of all file types?

Yes, software can recover all types of files. Moreover, the most amazing thing about this tool is that it works on all versions of the Windows operating system.

Q3: I noticed that all my files have been converted to shortcuts that I saved years ago. Can this software remove short-term viruses from my computer?

Yes, Shortcut virus removal software can help you remove the Shortcut virus and restore your files to a healthy state.


By Mohit Jha

Mohit is a Microsoft-certified expert who has assisted thousands of clients with Outlook & Microsoft Office 365 issues. He enjoys writing on email clients as well as data migration. He is always excited about giving troubled readers the most up-to-date knowledge, explanation, and refinements.