Pirated, outdated operating systems contributes in global ransomware attack

It breached computers through phishing emails and then spread through networks using a Server Messaging Block vulnerability on outdated Windows computers. WannaCry, the company argues, represents just the latest example of why intelligence agencies should not stockpile computer vulnerabilities that they use to hack into enemy systems.

They exploited a flawless storm of factors - the Windows hole, the ability to get ransom paid in digital currency, poor security practices - but it's unclear if the payoff, at least so far, was worth the trouble. In terms of finding who they are, investigators say it isn't impossible, that the hackers will eventually have to convert their bitcoin to real cash which could be traced.

While speaking to media, Subhamangala, Cyber Security expert said that so far there are so many states which has been affected with this malware. Since most of their machines were running the out-dated and no longer supported operating system, the WannaCry malware attack exploited lapses in XP.

Check Point is among the cybersecurity firms warning that victims should not pay the ransom demanded by WannaCry ransomware. Even after payment, the ransomware doesn't automatically release your computer and decrypt your files, according to security researchers. "Following this, Microsoft had sent patches in its update in March itself to counter this particular form of threats", Udhav told TNM.

In April, the Shadow Brokers leaked several cyber weapons online after reportedly hacking the NSA's Equation Group.

Microsoft legal chief Brad Smith says governments should share software vulnerabilities with vendors instead of keeping them secret.

"This was not a tool developed by the NSA to hold ransom data", homeland security adviser Bossert said at Monday's White House briefing.

One theory suggested that 90 percent of NHS trusts across the United Kingdom were using Microsoft's 16-year-old OS Windows XP, which could leave them susceptible to attacks.

Microsoft has introduced a security patch to tackle the situation, and consumers across the globe have been advised to download the solution at the earliest.CERT-In today said it has not received any formal report of cyber attack on India's vital networks by the crippling global ransomware, "WannaCry". Therefore, when the vulnerabilities got into the wrong hands, it is akin to the "US military having some of its Tomahawk missiles stolen" without the necessary defence to protect consumers.

  • Julie Sanders