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Log in, look out: cyberattack could grow Monday

17 Mai 2017

Becky Pinkard, from Digital Shadows, a UK-based cyber-security firm, told AFP news agency that it would be easy for the initial attackers or "copy-cat authors" to change the virus code so it is hard to guard against.

Public sector agencies also have a luxury in the form of highly-skilled government experts from the likes of the National Cyber Security Centre who are available to ensure that critical services, such as the NHS, are kept operational. The WannaCry software infected computers operating on Microsoft and displayed messages demanding users to pay $300 in bitcoin - type of digital currency widely used online. The digital payment system widely uses bitcoins, and it is one of the safest ways to access money which can not be tracked and does not leave a paper trail.

The so-called WannaCry cyberattack has affected hundreds of thousands of computers by exploiting vulnerabilities in Microsoft's Windows XP software, creating havoc around the world.

Organizations are scrambling to apply the latest security patch to their computers to prevent the spread of the attack. MalwareTech was an essential resource for updates on the spread of the malware yesterday and while conducting his research, he noticed that it was connecting to a domain with a long string of letters.

Nevertheless, experts know that the victory could be short-lived. WannaCry demonstrated how sophisticated these attacks have become.

Microsoft's president and top lawyer said Sunday that the ongoing cyberattacks, which experts are calling the largest in history, should be a "wake-up call" for governments - especially the U.S. The ransomware is allowing hackers to take complete access of the device and block the user out. Consequently, Microsoft should investigate the unsafe flaw in its system. So far, over 200,000 computers have been infected.

Organizations around the world have spent the weekend trying to recover after being hit by a virus that seeks to seize control of computers until victims pay a ransom.

Once your files are encrypted, your options are limited.

In most cases, the aim is to steal important information belonging to companies especially, or simply to send systems crushing. Thirdly, everyone should install antivirus software that will protect them from the most basic viruses by scanning the computer system.

Lastly, when affected already, users must not wait and see.

Some media reports claimed that the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has ordered some ATMs to remain shut as a preventive measure.

Edward Snowden, the whistleblower who exposed the broad scope of NSA surveillance in 2013, tweeted, "If @NSAGov had privately disclosed the flaw used to attack hospitals when they *found* it, not when they lost it, this may not have happened".

Log in, look out: cyberattack could grow Monday