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U.S. should take some of blame for massive cyberattack, Chinese media says

17 Mai 2017

Government offices, banks and hospitals around the world are bracing themselves for a possible repeat of Friday's global cyber-attack, while tech giant Microsoft pinned blame on the USA government for not disclosing more software vulnerabilities.

Hackers hijacked computers, locking users out of their data unless they paid a ransom in Bitcoins, nearly impossible to trace.

The number of organizations hit by Friday's massive global "WannaCry" cyberattack reached 200,000 targets in at least 150 countries, the head of the European Union's police agency reported, according to Al Jazeera.

Should you pay the ransom?

Typically the price increases over time until the end of a countdown, when the files are destroyed.

According to Microsoft, the affected computers did not have security patches. It's also called WannaCrypt.

Why do hackers do this?

There are a total of 2.2 lakh ATMs in India, of which few may be running on old Windows XP.

The worm encrypts data on an infected system, and then tells the user that their files have been locked and displays information on how much is to be paid and when - up to roughly $600 in bitcoin.

You're out of luck.

MalwareTech acquired the kill switch domain after getting a sample of the WannaCry ransomware from a security researcher known as Kafeine, that works with security firm Proofpoint. Luckily, though, the spread of "WannaCry" has slowed down over the weekend.

Great, so I have to pay these monsters to get my computer back?

There's a code among whitehat hackers and cybersecurity experts alike, whether they're professionals on Google's Project Zero team or just a guy with some know-how working out of his basement: when you discover a bug, you contact the software developer and give them a chance to make it right.

A security expert in England has been hailed as an "accidental hero" for quashing the spread of the initial version of the ransomware late Friday.

"We have seen vulnerabilities stored by the Central Intelligence Agency show up on WikiLeaks, and now this vulnerability stolen from the NSA has affected customers around the world", wrote Smith.

Does WannaCry affect my Mac, iPhone or Android? WannaCry exploits a vulnerability in the Windows operating system that was first identified by the National Security Agency (NSA). In what it said was a "highly unusual" step, Microsoft also agreed to provide the patch for older versions of Windows, including Windows XP and Windows Server 2003.

Meanwhile, individual departments that operate their own systems have been asked to update anti-virus software and close vulnerabilities, if any.

"The infection of one computer triggers rather remotely the infection of entire networks", Wainwright said. Microsoft, on Friday, released patches to close vulnerabilities that allowed the bug to access networks.

In Kerala, computers of two village panchayats were hit, with messages demanding $300 in virtual currency to unlock the files. Consider this map released by Malwareless.

U.S. should take some of blame for massive cyberattack, Chinese media says