'Windows 10 is only OS safe from WannaCry', says Microsoft

WannaCry Ransomware Attack Could Spark Lawsuits- But Not Against Microsoft

WannaCry Ransomware Attack Could Spark Lawsuits- But Not Against Microsoft

It was no grand technological feat perpetrated by genius hacker masterminds. He also blasted the way government agencies have handled sensitive security disclosures.

And that, in fact, is a piece of good news.

What is so special about this malware is that it does not need any user interaction to propagate. Here are five steps that can do it. The attack, according to The Verge, focused on Windows 7 or Windows XP operating systems.

Windows automatically updates itself for security and bug fixes unless otherwise instructed, which means the vast majority of WannaCry infections should have been preventable. Instead, it stockpiles many vulnerabilities.

On Sunday, Microsoft's Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith censured the US government and stated the cyberattack demonstrates the risks of spy offices "stockpiling" these security flaws in the form of weapons.

In its latest update about the ransomware attack, Europol's European Cybercrime Center said it had tested a "partial solution developed by Benjamin Delpy, Matt Suiche and Adrien Guinet" and found that it was able to recover encrypted data on some victims' systems.

Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith criticized the NSA for this in a blistering blog post. A lot of pronouncements from various people and entities saying this is a "wake-up call".

"The exploit technique is known as HeapSpraying and is used to inject shellcode into vulnerable systems allowing for the exploitation of the system", the firm said in an advisory. "They are pushing them out because of malicious and strong vulnerability". Files leaked by Shadow Brokers last month, resulted in this vulnerability becoming public.

Technology giant Microsoft reportedly had the chance to release a free security update to counter the quick spread of the WannaCry ransomware but did otherwise. The company was lauded for doing that, because it made the patch available to anyone running XP, even though XP is no longer supported by Microsoft. But it should not be just a one-off; it should be standard operating procedure. "At some point, organizations which don't update or patch their software even in the face of a steady stream of security threats can't expect their suppliers to fix things for them".

Perhaps the most frightening statistic that Trend Micro found was that in one in five cases, even when the company paid the ransom, they were unable to recover their important files - indicating that the ransomware service is not quite as robust as it should be.

People and companies should return to the basics of cyber security to protect themselves from threats such as the WannaCry ransomware attack, experts say.

Having systems in place as to how often data is backed up is crucial; the more often you back up, the less data will be lost and the sooner your firm can get back to work with minimal loss. Windows 10 was not affected by the WannaCry attacks. "Most have heterogeneous IT environments with critical applications; they can not roll out a patch until they have tested it to make sure that there are no unforeseen side effects". Automating updates and patching through your system can also help. They do this because they have tools vital to their operations that will only run on these older operating systems.

It's been only a week since WannaCry ransomware hit the news, infecting about 300,000 devices in 150 countries worldwide, but it looks like cyber criminals have no intentions to stop the rage. The problem isn't just that the government doesn't enforce piracy laws. Why healthcare? Simple, healthcare systems are the most diverse and heterogeneous networks and typically use software and systems which are geared towards saving lives, whereas security tends not to be an initial consideration.

While individuals are hit by this worm, worse hit are businesses.

A study by the BSA Software alliance found that in 2015, 70% of all software in China and 64% of all software in Russian Federation wasn't properly licensed.

Recommended News

  • Philippines needs modern arms to fight ISIS, Duterte tells Putin

    The militants had reportedly taken over a medical center and replaced the Philippines flag with a black, ISIS-style banner. Cayetano said he would stay behind in Moscow, where a number of agreements are to be signed between the governments.
    Predators advance to Stanley Cup Final

    Predators advance to Stanley Cup Final

    DEPTH SCORING: Two-way center Ryan Kesler played his usual excellent defensive game, but scored just one goal in 17 playoff games. While Nashville managed 2-0 and 3-1 leads, there was plenty of drama in this one, as the Ducks did not go down easily.
    Trump becomes first sitting United States  president to visit Western Wall

    Trump becomes first sitting United States president to visit Western Wall

    Ivanka Trump was clearly moved by her closeness to the holy site, and spent a long time in deep prayer, touching the walls. The ancient stones are in a part of Jerusalem that Israel captured in the 1967 Middle East war.
  • Having previously clashed, Trump and Pope Francis meet

    Having previously clashed, Trump and Pope Francis meet

    Pope Francis is meeting first lady Melania Trump, Trump's oldest daughter Ivanka , and other members of the US delegation. In contrast to this, the Pope believes that climate change is largely man-made, which needs to be urgently addressed.
    Trump budget gets critique by lawmakers

    Trump budget gets critique by lawmakers

    Democratic votes would also likely be needed to pass the fiscal 2018 spending bills needed to carry out budget priorities. The budget proposal said the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation military alliance "would continue to be fully funded".

    Manchester attack: Who is Salman Abedi?

    Many of them had serious wounds that will require "very long term care and support in terms of their recovery", Rouse said . May said a new attack "may be imminent" but the authorities stressed that the soldiers would remain under police command.
  • The FBI let Apple reveal the existence of a secret inquiry

    The FBI let Apple reveal the existence of a secret inquiry

    The requests impacted 4750-4999 accounts - more than double the amount it received in the first half of 2016, according to ZDNet . When NSLs are marked declassified it's often because the case has been marked inactive.

    Pope Francis, Trump meet in Vatican for private talk

    Trump , who has threatened to ignore the Paris accords on emissions and described global warming as a hoax, vowed to read them. The president, accompanied by his wife and several aides, arrived at the Vatican just after 8am local time.

    Trump's health care budget means deep cuts for safety net

    It would, however, slash $3.2 billion from the " individual unemployability " benefit, which the budget says will be "modernized". Trump's reason for not touching any reforms of Social Security or Medicare is that he promised not to on the campaign trail.
  • Irving, James turn the tables on Celtics with comeback of their own

    But now James will have to be tired about taking to the basket and being aggressive knowing that he is in major foul trouble. Cleveland improved to 35-5 against Eastern teams in the playoffs since 2015.
    What time, channel is Celtics vs. Wizards Game 6

    What time, channel is Celtics vs. Wizards Game 6

    This caused each player to be held back and resulted in Oubre being ejected and possibly being suspended for today's game 5. Thomas took the lead during the last quarter where Bradley was sitting on the bench as he scored eight consecutive points.
    Usmanov bid to buy Arsenal rejected by Kroenke

    Usmanov bid to buy Arsenal rejected by Kroenke

    Usmanov - the U.S. sports mogul, who controls a 67 per cent stake - is striking at Kroenke at the point of greatest weakness. Kroenke Sports and Entertainment added it was "a committed, long-term investor in Arsenal and will remain so".

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.