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Ransomware attack hit more than 100000 organizations, says Interpol
20 May 2017, 02:48 | Deanna Wagner
Once infected, all of the files on the computer are encrypted by the malware, which then displays a ransom demand of between U.S. $300 and $600 in bitcoin that needs to be paid before the files can be decrypted.
The worldwide effort to extort cash from computer users is the first widely successful example of ransomware that self-replicates like a virus, and it prompted Microsoft to quickly change its policy, announcing free security patches to fix this vulnerability in the older Windows systems still used by millions of individuals and smaller businesses. The spokesperson stressed the ransomware malware can encrypt files on external drives such as a USB thumb drive, as well as any network or cloud file stores.
The researcher, identified online only as MalwareTech, explained that he spotted a hidden web address in the "WannaCry" code and made it official by registering its domain name.
How can I protect my computer from the ransomware virus?
Fortunately, Friday's ransomware attack may have been contained.
"The worm loops through every RDP session on a system to run the ransomware as that user. Or we could potentially see copycats mimic the delivery or exploit method they used".
Finding out who was behind the malware is going to be very hard.
The U.K. government's cyber office put it succinctly: "T$3 he way these attacks work means that compromises of machines and networks that have already occurred may not yet have been detected, and that existing infections from the malware can spread within networks". "We need governments to consider the damage to civilians that comes from hoarding these vulnerabilities and the use of these exploits". "And this most recent attack represents a completely unintended but disconcerting link between the two most serious forms of cybersecurity threats in the world today - nation-state action and organized criminal action.", Microsoft president Brad Smith said in the statement.
The US government on Saturday issued a technical alert with advice on how to protect against the attacks, asking victims to report attacks to the Federal Bureau of Investigation or Department of Homeland Security. They can also act to direct their security services to disclose weaknesses in software systems, rather than keeping them secret in order to exploit them themselves against some future enemy.
Experts say the spread of the virus had been stymied by a security researcher in the United Kingdom hackers have issued new versions of the virus that cyber security organizations are actively trying to counter and stamp out. Europol, the European Union law-enforcement agency, has advised people to be wary of clicking on links in or downloading attachments from any emails from senders they do not recognise. If you don't know, double check with the sender. Install all Windows updates. 5. Better still, set the system to automatically do this on your behalf.
The virus tried to infect more computers in Russia than anywhere else, according to an analysis by Kaspersky Lab, a Russian antivirus company.
Veteran actress Reema Lagoo dies at 59
We dug out a video interview of her of 2009 where Reema was told that Salman chose her as his favourite on-screen mother. Here, she played the character of Shah Rukh Khan's mother who supports and strengthens him during his last few days.