Security Minister calls Windows XP accusations ‘red herrings — NHS cyber attack

As per a NDTV report, WannaCry was stopped in its tracks by a British researcher, but it did infect almost 2 lakh computers worldwide.

The attack was a remarkable global event.

There’s a blame game brewing over who’s responsible for the past week’s cyberattack that infected hundreds of thousands of computers. Those numbers were only expected to rise as people started their work week.

In his blog post, Microsoft’s Smith says that “the governments of the world should treat this attack as a wake-up call”. “Since ransomware is on the rise and a tool of choice by cybercriminals, consumers should be on high alert for phishing schemes”. Ransomware is a type of malware (“malicious software”) that infects a machine and holds your data hostage. With respect to this virus it demands an immediate $300 in the first few hours or the price would double, triple and so on.

Still, “My answer is, never pay the ransom”, Abrams said. If you’re using an old version of Windows, such as XP, it’s time to upgrade, said Hickey. The spread of the virus has also been greatly slowed after a security researcher discovered a way to block it.

“In particular, making sure that our data is properly backed up and making sure that we are using the software patches, the anti-virus patches that are sent out regularly by manufacturers”. There is no greater illustration of that problem than what is happening right now across the world. Of the 18 updates Microsoft released on 14 March, including the WannaCry fix, half were rated “critical”, and the rest were labelled “important”. But here’s why the attack spread so rapidly: Many major firms like healthcare and telecom organizations are running “legacy software”, or old, outdated technology that no longer receives software updates. You should have these stored in more than one place.

Users should also “exercise caution when opening email attachments”. And “within the emails is a.zip file, and once clicked that initiates the WannaCry infection”, Forbes reports. But many businesses can’t or choose not to for cost reasons. “However, according to experts at Norton, in 2016 only 47 percent of victims who paid ransoms recovered their data”.

“Most importantly for ransomware, backup the data that matters to you”, NCSC advised.

Ensure that your computer is up to date with patches Run Windows Update ASAP to get the latest software updates.

Lawrence Abrams, a New York-based blogger who runs BleepingComputer.com, says many organizations don’t install security upgrades because they’re anxious about triggering bugs, or they can’t afford the downtime. Also, in the previous paragraphs, the New York Times article described bitcoin as an anonymous cyber crime money.

The biggest question is whether businesses should pay or not. Kaspersky Lab says that the majority of affected systems were in Russian Federation. It’s a good idea to back up files to a drive that remains entirely disconnected from your network. “You have to worry about this”.

What can you do to protect yourself? “You can’t rely on the premise that you’re too small for someone like a hacker or scammer to be interested in you”.

The most common recommendation is to update everything immediately. However, data stolen from the infected computers can be sold in the black market for millions of dollars.

Investors should buy Microsoft shares because the recent cyberattacks will spur companies to upgrade to the technology giant’s latest operating system, according to Credit Suisse, which reiterated its outperform rating on the software firm.

Levin says in order to combat this issue, you need to approach it on three levels.

But there is need to understand that cyber weapons can be as harmful as the physical ones and there is dire need to dispose of them responsibly – since there seems to be no foreseeable end to government’s hoarding cyber vulnerabilities against their enemies.

“Consumers have to understand the fact that they are in partnership with business and government”, Levin explains. There you can easily check for updates.

“Anytime something like this happens, we wonder if this will be the tipping point”. We simply don’t have enough trained security folks scanning systems, doing threat intelligence research or responding to incidents when they occur.