What is WannaCry? What does WannaCry ransomware do?

Fernando Stephens
May 18, 2017

While Choi's speculation may deepen suspicions that the nuclear-armed state is responsible, the evidence is still far from conclusive.

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.

Former NSA contractor and whistleblower Edward Snowden echoed that criticism on Twitter.

Some experts also believe that a widespread use of bootleg software in India might have forced companies to cover up their losses as they can not report the same due to licensing issues.

The flaws "were known to the NSA and Central Intelligence Agency, but were kept secret by those organizations to be exploited for their own data collection purposes", Wicker said.

The WannaCry attack "bore some striking similarities to the code used in those three attacks". Kaspersky Lab, a Russian cybersecurity firm, alleges WannaCrypt ransomware may be tied to hackers from North Korea.

Others subsequently confirmed the Google researcher's work. "We are in the second wave", said Matthieu Suiche of Comae Technologies.

Researchers are keen to point out that more investigation is needed before any definitive conclusions can be drawn. Still, he said Microsoft should accept some responsibility.

In the case of the WannaCry issue, at the moment that has now hit more than 150 countries and about 200,000 computer networks.

Mathieu Gorge: Ransomware is a type of malware that will encrypt your data once it is on your systems and will display a message asking you to pay a ransom, an amount of money in actual currencies or in Bitcoin, to get the decryption keys.

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On Friday, the world was hit by one of the biggest cyberattacks in recent history.

Still, since the attack has making headlines, the Internet is full of organizations and people providing guidance about safe use of technology.

How did all of this get started? The outbreak was able to quickly spread across the globe because it leveraged malicious computer code that was shared by the Shadow Brokers in April and likely developed by the NSA.

The centre, which was opened in February 2017 to provide advice on national cyber security incidents, emphasised that there are several simple steps that organisations and the public could take to reduce the risk of being targeted by a ransomware attack. "(The unit has since been renamed.)", according to the Times.

"Javelin's solution is specifically created to automatically detect, respond and contain such spreading in a corporate network in real time", he said.

The WannaCry ransomware was so potent largely because of a software exploit stolen from the NSA - also, ironically, headed by Rogers. "An equivalent scenario with conventional weapons would be the US military having some of its Tomahawk missiles stolen".

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

Smith says cyberweapons require a new approach, and governments must "consider the damage to civilians that comes from hoarding these vulnerabilities and the use of these exploits". Auto manufacturer Renault shut down some of its French factories in order to restore its network's security‚ while a Nissan plant in England was also affected.

The Vietnam Computer Emergency Response Team (VNCERT), under the Ministry of Information and Communications, has issued warnings as well as offered protection measures to all users to guard against the ransomware and its variations, which target Microsoft Windows - an operating system that is widely used in Vietnam, especially the outdated Windows XP.

Because hackers exploited a security hole in some Windows versions discovered by the National Security Agency, Microsoft says the intelligence agency bears some responsibility.

Other reports by BadHub

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