A timeline of the WannaCry cyberattack

Rodiano Bonacci
Mag 19, 2017

Microsoft should know that there are people, small businesses, schools and hospitals that still use older version of Windows, such as XP (which came out in 2001). Eastern time, according to a report by The Financial Times. Monday was the first big test for Asia, where offices had already mostly been closed for the weekend before the attack first arrived.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has asked banks to follow the instructions of government organisation CERT-In on ransomware, which has impacted various IT networks in over 150 countries.

Brian Lord, managing director of cyber and technology at cyber security firm PGI, said victims had told him "the customer service provided by the criminals is second-to-none", with helpful advice on how to pay: "One customer said they actually forgot they were being robbed".

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.

A screenshot of the warning screen from a purported ransomware attack, as captured by a computer user in Taiwan, is seen on laptop in Beijing. If the ransom isn't paid, the data is often lost forever. Ideally, this data should be kept on a separate device, and backups should be stored offline.

In England, 48 National Health Service (NHS) trusts reported problems at hospitals, doctor surgeries or pharmacies, and 13 NHS organisations in Scotland were also affected.

Cluley said yesterday's attack also highlighted the risks that organizations take by not investing in updated IT systems and security. The cyber attack has dominated headlines for a number of days, with hackers requiring payment to allow users back into an estimated 230,000 computer systems across the world. The patch was automatically applied for Windows 7 systems in March, but Windows XP users must download the patch to secure their system. "We are implementing remediation steps as quickly as possible.

To protect your computer from such malicious malwares, one should be aware of the security measures and install all necessary updates", Dinesh Yadav, superintendent of police (city), said in a press note.

At present, the so-called "kill switch" for the attack, discovered by a young British cybersecurity researcher, is no longer effective.

In a separate malware attack past year, 3.2 lakh debit cards were compromised in the country. "Upon running the sample in my analysis environment I instantly noticed it queried an unregistered domain, which I promptly registered".

It's hard to blame Microsoft, Litan said, since it issued fixes and generally did what it should.

The attack, known as "WannaCry" had a key influence across Asia with Chinese state media saying nearly 30,000 institutions had been infected.

Experts anticipated that an update to the malware could be released, therefore increasing its spread. A month before the ShadowBrokers released the EternalBlue vulnerability, Microsoft issued a patch for it, but that didn't stop the ransomware's spread.

"Working through our Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center (MSTIC) and Digital Crimes Unit, we'll also share what we learn with law enforcement agencies, governments, and other customers around the world", the software firm said.

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