USA should not stockpile cyber weapons, Microsoft says

16 Mai, 2017, 13:48 | Author: Claudine Rigal

The full extent of the damage from the cyberattack felt in 150 countries was unclear and could worsen if more malicious variations of the online extortion scheme appear.

"WannaCry is different from anything we've ever seen before in that it's a union of the old and new", said Haiyan Song, senior vice president of security markets at Splunk, in an email to CRN.

Urging businesses and computer users to keep their systems current and updated, Smith says the WannaCry attack shows the importance of collective action to fight cybercrime.

More and more antivirus platforms, including Microsoft's own Windows Defender, are now recognising and blocking the malware, but relying on a purely technical fix means that a new variant of the software could sneak past the defences.

When the ransomware takes over a computer, the attackers are pretty explicit in their demands, Segura said.

"We don't expect this to be a sophisticated group", said Wellsmore.

USA and European officials scrambled to catch the culprits behind a massive ransomware worm that caused damage across the globe over the weekend, stopping vehicle factories, hospitals, shops and schools, as Microsoft pinned blame on governments for not disclosing more software vulnerabilities.

In a post today, UK-based security researcher MalwareTech described how he checked a cyber threat sharing platform after returning home from lunch to discover that National Health Service systems across Britain were being hit by a cyberattack.

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

Carmaker Renault said one of its French plants, which employs 3,500 people, wasn't reopening Monday as a "preventative step". Seven of the 47 affected trusts were still having IT problems Monday. The NHS has said hospitals have had to cancel some outpatient appointments because of the attack.

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Worldwide standards should compel countries not to stockpile or exploit software vulnerabilities, Smith says. Hunt told broadcaster Sky News, the United Kingdom had "never seen a ransomware attack on this scale".


NHS Digital, which oversees United Kingdom hospital cybersecurity, said it sent alerts about the problem - and a patch to fix it - to health service staff and IT professionals last month. A new ransomeware called "Wannacry" or "Wannacrypt" has attacked a few big countries and created havoc by targeting sensitive industries like healthcare. "It is so visible and so global".

More than 75,000 computers in 99 countries were compromised in Friday's attack, with a heavy concentration of infections in Russian Federation and Ukrain, according to Dutch security company Avast Software BV.

Broadcaster NTV said 600 companies and 2,000 computers in Japan had been affected.

Brian Lord, managing director of cyber and technology at cyber security firm PGI, said victims had told him "the customer service provided by the criminals is second to none", with helpful advice on how to pay: "One customer said they actually forgot they were being robbed".

Chinese state media Xinhua meanwhile reported that 29,000 institutions across China had been infected by the cyber attack. Otherwise they're literally fighting the problems of the present with tools from the past. But these worm attacks became harder to pull off as computer owners and software makers shored up their defenses.

All it took for hackers to bring about a global mayhem was a tool someone stole from the US National Security Agency earlier in the year and vulnerability in Microsoft's Windows operating system.

Computers booting up to start the workweek might continue the spread of "WannaCry", a ransomware attack where hackers lock down a computer and threaten to delete all its data unless a ransom is paid.

Patch your computers. They should have the latest software update. It was benign because it contained a flaw that prevented it from taking over computers and demanding ransom to unlock files but other more malicious ones will likely pop up.

"We haven't fully dodged this bullet at all until we're patched against the vulnerability itself", Kalember said.

Experts said India is vulnerable as a large number of computers in the country run the Microsoft's older operating systems like XP, and have not been updated yet.

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