WannaCrypt Hits 74 Countries

UK NHS Confirms Several Trusts Have Been

Wannacrypt malware spread. Source: MalwareTech

UK NHS trusts were among organisations in 74 different countries infected by the WannaCrypt Malware Virus. Confirmed reports seem to suggest that there was no specific targeting and NHS trusts in London, Manchester and Dublin became victims as the virus spread around the world.

Much like most malware, WannaCrypt encrypts users data on machines and presents a ransomware message to the user telling them to pay up $300 in Bitcoin to unlock the data.

What makes this unique is the fact WannaCrypt uses a Windows vulnerability present in unpatched versions of Windows XP and if some reports are to be believed, Windows 7 too. Indeed, Microsoft’s own bulletin on the topic targets pretty much every Windows Server and Desktop version since then. Just look at the size of the table of operating systems requiring the critical patch!

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/security/ms17-010.aspx

SMB attacks have been used by the NSA through the BlueEternal tool which targets the Server Message Block v1.0 and allows remote code execution on the infected Windows machine. The issues are very serious, given the prevalence of the operating system and with affected NHS hospitals now allegedly resorting to pen and paper, it is a reminder of how increasingly vulnerable society is to such attacks.


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