WannaCry Ransomware: Apple Users Too Vulnerable To Such Attacks

It mainly targeted computers running the business version of Windows, specifically those using the SMB network file system. The WannaCry hack threatens to delete users' encrypted files in a week if a ransom of $300 isn't met - doubled if the payment isn't made in within three days.

The ransomware has so far infected more than 200,000 computers in around 150 countries all across the globe.

As a result, Microsoft has been forced to publish a security patch to curb the spread of "WannaCry" on systems running the unsupported Windows XP, Windows 8, and Windows Server 2003 operating systems.

This is a CJ CGV screen in Seoul that has been crippled by WannaCry ransomware on May 15, 2017.

The effects were felt across the globe, with Britain's National Health Service, Russia's Interior Ministry and companies including Spain's Telefonica, FedEx Corp.in the USA and French carmaker Renault all reporting disruptions.

While most have been repaired, some 152 computers are still affected by the malware, the company said. Cyber security experts said the spread of the virus dubbed WannaCry had slowed but that the respite might only be brief amid fears it could cause new havoc on Monday when employees return to work. But since you're dealing with criminals, there's no reason to think they will do what they promise.

"We haven't fully dodged this bullet at all until we're patched against the vulnerability itself", Kalember said.

Friday's extortion attack, which locked up computers and held users' files for ransom, is believed to be the biggest of its kind ever recorded.

He added: "The governments of the world should treat this attack as a wake-up call". It locks down all the files on an infected computer.

"That's what makes this more troubling than ransomware was a week ago", Thakur said.

"The numbers are still going up", he said.

While Smith said that Microsoft (and its customers) need to take more responsibility for their role, the executive laid the bulk of the responsibility for the massive cyberhack at the feet of government agencies.

The malicious software behind the onslaught appeared to exploit a vulnerability in Microsoft Windows that was supposedly identified by the US National Security Agency for its own intelligence-gathering purposes and was later leaked to the internet.

He said it was too early to say who is behind the onslaught and what their motivation was. Many public computers still have Windows XP installed, and they could be susceptible to the malware if IT administrators have not downloaded the appropriate security patches.

"Right now, just about every IT department has been working all weekend rolling this out", said Dan Wire, spokesman at Fireeye Security. Because of the extremely high impact, Microsoft has made a decision to issue patches for ALL operating systems, including the unsupported ones.

This one worked because of a "perfect storm" of conditions, including a known and highly risky security hole in Microsoft Windows, tardy users who didn't apply Microsoft's March software fix, and malware created to spread quickly once inside university, business and government networks.

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