Recently there were a buzz of a new computer ransomware that has spread across the world. WannaCry is new ransomware spreading like a fever everywhere and brought down everything from train stations to ATM machines. It even affected thousands of organizations and private users all around the world.
What does WannaCry do? WannaCry ransomware encrypts all the data of victim computer system with a private encryption key, and it can be only be decrypted with a paired decryption key. The decryption key can only be given once you paid the ransom in bitcoins. The only mode of payment is bitcoins(cryptocurrency) because it is very hard to track and largely anonymous. Bitcoins are largely popular among hackers as bitcoins are not an actual currency and it is not being regulated by any government.
WannaCry has affected all Windows system including XP, Vista, windows 8, Server 2003 and Server 2008. Microsoft has quickly released a patch that fixes SMB flaw which is being exploited by Wanna Cry ransomware. Microsoft even released a patch for those old Windows operating system that is not supported by the company anymore. You can download the patch by visiting microsoft.com
It is reported that almost 150 countries have been affected by this ransomware. The rate might increase in upcoming days. Only an old version of Windows operating system are been affected. Other operating systems including Linux and Mac Os have remained unaffected
Here are some of the expert’s quote for the recent WannaCry Ransomware attack.
Bharatt Kumaar Malik, Founder and CEO at DistancesBetween.com says “It’s magnitude is yet to be realized but we doubt that it has an impact on payment gateways, however, having said that it has an impact on the accessibility of user’s system to perform any action related to the financial transaction. Dip in the transaction may directly be related to sentiments driven by ransomware attack.”
According to LC Singh, Founder, Vice Chairman and CEO of Nihilent Technologies, “The nature of malicious code, or malware, (e.g., viruses, worms, bots) shifted recently from disrupting service to actively seeking financial gain. In the past, worms were designed primarily to propagate. The impact on victims was primarily a disruption of service resulting in loss of productivity and sometimes a loss in revenue. Now, many significant worms are designed to steal sensitive information such as credit card numbers, social security numbers, pin codes, and passwords and send the information to the attacker for nefarious purposes including identity theft. Unfortunately, attackers have become very adept at circumventing traditional defenses such as anti-virus software and firewalls. Standard best practices of deploying latest operating systems, application patches and anti-virus go a long way in reducing these attacks. Organizations must have information security policies that reduce exposure to malware, and will need to develop, deploy, monitor, and test security tools throughout their network. The aim is to detect any hint of anomaly using machine learning on past data, to be able to avoid compromises and, in the event they do get infected, ensure a faster recovery.”