'WannaCry' ransomware attack: What we know so far


Currently, an estimated 200,000 victims in 150 different countries are reported to have been hit by the cyberattack.

It comes after more than 200,000 victims in around 150 countries were infected by ransomware that originated in the United Kingdom and Spain before spreading around the world.

The government is not legally bound to notify at-risk companies.

Though the ransomware continued to spread at a more subdued pace on Monday, many companies and government agencies were still struggling to recover from the first attack. Seven of the 47 affected trusts were still having IT problems Monday.

"It's probably going to get worse before it gets better, as it's going to be one of the most serious threats for the following 12 months", Catalin Cosoi, Bitdefender's chief security strategist, said in a blog post about the EternalBlue vulnerability and the on-going attacks.

Anyone who thinks they have been affected by the WannaCry ransomware or any other cyber security issue can report it to Cert by visiting www.cert.govt.nz or phoning 0800 2378 69. Still, he said Microsoft should accept some responsibility.

Companies such as Nissan and FedEx admitted they were hit by the attack.

Chinese state media said 29,372 institutions there had been infected along with hundreds of thousands of devices.

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It's easy to say everyone should be vigilant, install every patch released and, preferably, never miss an operating system update.

He added that contractors "often exist in a kind of no-man's land" where they work for companies that do not directly oversee them since the contractors are working in government offices, but they are also not monitored in the same fashion as government employees.

In Indonesia, the malware locked patient files on computers in two hospitals in the capital, Jakarta, causing delays. Microsoft earlier this year issued a patch to protect computers from the malware, but in many parts of the world, users of Windows XP or Windows Vista failed to upgrade their systems or download the patch.

"It's not rocket science", Litan said.

"If there is a silver lining to it, you're not out a million dollars", he said. You can change the locks but what has happened cannot be undone. "At that point, it will be harder to stop new variants".

"It spread very, very quickly", Smith said.

"We haven't fully dodged this bullet at all until we're patched against the vulnerability itself", Kalember said. Then, hackers demand $300 to decode files, encrypted by the virus. Once the user clicks on the link or opens the document, their computer is infected and the software takes over. He said that especially in large organizations, patching can be slow and cumbersome, and while it needs to be done, more focus on segmentation of networks can prioritize and speed up the patching process.

"The governments of the world should treat this attack as a wake-up call".

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"In the current environment, government-held vulnerabilities are going to leak", said Ari Schwartz, former senior director for cybersecurity at the NSC and now with Venable.

Microsoft's top lawyer is laying some of the blame at the feet of the US government.

Microsoft Corp President Brad Smith sharply criticized the U.S. government on Sunday for "stockpiling" software flaws that it often can not protect, citing recent leaks of both NSA and Central Intelligence Agency hacking tools.

Vietnam Computer Emergency Response Team (VNCERT) under the Ministry of Information and Communications has urged organizations and companies nationwide to prevent possible attacks from WannaCry ransomware.

"Unquestionably, it was criminals who unleashed this malware to make money". So far, not many people have paid the ransom demanded by the malware, Europol spokesman Jan Op Gen Oorth told The Associated Press.

Many firms have had experts working over the weekend to prevent new infections.

Its creators used a vulnerability in Microsoft's Windows operating system, and an exploit developed by the NSA and leaked by a group called Shadow Brokers in April, to create malware that also had a worm element and spread on its own to vulnerable machines.

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