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Wannacry crisis: hits over 40000 Indian computers

19 May 2017

Certainly, WannaCry's use of the NSA tool codenamed EternalBlue enabled it to cause so much damage so quickly.

The recent cyber attacks against windows machines are prompting companies to upgrade to Microsoft's latest version of the operating system. One source suggests that more than 10% of all desktop PCs run Windows XP, and a significant portion of those victims will likely be small businesses. Even though there are ways to install the latest updates on updates on Windows which are not genuine, Microsoft is also implementing restrictions every once in a while, so depending on the release, it could be more or less hard to patch a pirated Windows copy. The higher risk of being encrypted lies at those Microsoft computers that are not patched with the update. But Smith didn't stop there.

Fortunately the situation was not as bad as previously thought, probably because networking experts at companies and government agencies around the world updated their softwares over the weekend to block the infiltration of the virus.

That's not wrong at all, Charles King, principal analyst with research firm Pund-IT, told ITPro. In addition, Microsoft also took the very unique step of recently releasing security updates to address the vulnerability for Windows XP and Server 2003, even though they are both years past their Extended Support lifetimes.

Over 10 computers at customer care centres of West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (WBSEDCL) were attacked in West Midnapore, South Dinajpur and East Midnapore districts. It jumped to $1,000 after that, according to one person who had seen a pricing schedule that Microsoft sent to one customer, with a minimum payment of $750,000 and a ceiling of $25m. "But the fact is that many or most of those affected by WannaCrypt had the chance to secure their systems and failed to do so".

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

"Customers have to take at least a little responsibility for their own security", said Olds.

Microsoft held back from distributing a free fix for old versions of its software that could have slowed last week's devastating ransomware attack, charging some customers $US1,000 a year per device for protection against such threats.

If your devices can update themselves and download security updates automatically, use those features.

WannaCry or Wanna Decryptor ransomware seems to have used a vulnerability in Microsoft's software.

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Governments and major software users must make sure they update their systems and security programs regularly, as hackers may exploit the security loopholes in existing systems.

Microsoft is to be lauded for its swift action in coming up with a patch for the older OSes, and it is to be hoped that this experience will provoke a rethink about support levels for what it may see as dinosaurs, but in practical terms are still far from extinct.

Both Murakami Wood and Munro painted a picture of a future where a huge number of devices are running out-of-date, unsupported software that will never receive security patches. "Even so Microsoft did attempt to patch what they could at a massive cost to the firm". It would be a good idea to buy Microsoft shares right about now.

The state-run People's Daily compared the cyber attack to the terrorist hacking depicted in the U.S. film "Die Hard 4", warning that China's role in global trade and internet connectivity opened it to increased risks from overseas.

The WannaCry Ransomware has wrecked havoc across the world since last Friday and enterprises and government agencies are on their toes since last three days to minimize the impact.

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