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Full impact of cyber-attack on patients at Derriford Hospital revealed

19 May 2017

More than 200,000 victims in about 150 countries have been infected by the ransomware so far.

The massive ransomware attacks that started late Friday have locked people out of their computers and demanded hundreds of dollars from the users before they could regain control. "We will continue to work with affected (organizations) to confirm this", the agency said. Meanwhile, a security researcher in the United Kingdom discovered a "kill switch" in WannaCry, further mitigating its impact.

Wainwright said the agency is analyzing the virus and has yet to identify who is responsible for the attack.

"Small business owners should be pro-active about their cyber security in the wake of this ransomware campaign affecting computers around the world", Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Cyber Security Dan Tehan said in an after hours statement.

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EsteemAudit takes advantage of a vulnerability in Microsoft's Remote Desktop Protocol in Windows 2003 and Windows XP, allowing an attacker to install and execute malicious code, according to an analysis by Fortinet.

Experts fear further waves of cyber attacks may be on the way, as criminals race to re-purpose hacking tools that were stolen from the US National Security Agency and leaked last month.

"The government's response has been chaotic, to be frank", the British Labour Party's health spokesman Jon Ashworth said.

The order came as West End bosses representing stores such as Selfridges and John Lewis today asked for an urgent summit with police experts on how to protect themselves from a new attack.

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The attack has left 47 NHS organisations affected with malware in their system, ranging from hospital trusts to commissioning support units.

Problems with cyber security in the NHS was highlighted a year ago by Dame Fiona Caldicott, the national data guardian, who warned issues were given insufficient priority and that health bodies persisted in using obsolete computer systems, The Times reported. It wasn't immediately clear to what degree nations across Asia were being affected by the attack Monday.

Specialists are concerned that computer systems that have not had security patches applied could be infected by the ransomware called WannaCry.

An official from Cybersecurity Administration China (CAC) told local media on Monday that while the ransomware was still spreading and had affected industry and government computer systems, the spread was slowing. The statement said antivirus systems are working to destroy it.

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Staff at Europe's biggest hospital were warned on Monday not to switch on their computers as the NHS battled to recover from the crippling cyber attack. As word of the attack grabbed news headlines over the weekend, Microsoft president and chief legal officer, wrote that the "attack provides yet another example of why the stockpiling of vulnerabilities by governments is such a problem", in a May 14 blog post.