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Microsoft Slams NSA Over Ransomware Nightmare

Microsoft Slams NSA Over Ransomware Nightmare

Microsoft has had a whirlwind last few days.

It said computers running on the desktop and server editions of the Microsoft Windows operating system are most impacted. Insurance companies say takers for cyber insurance in India are predominantly banks, other financial sector entities, IT companies, pharma and auto manufacturers.

One takeaway is sexy and edgy. "As cybercriminals become more sophisticated, there is simply no way for customers to protect themselves against threats unless they update their systems". You should just do it. Microsoft released a patch for the vulnerability after it leaked this year, but many users may not have updated their systems.

The National Informatics Centre, which builds and manages nearly all government websites, and the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing, a premier research institute that has built supercomputers, have actively installed patches to immunise their Windows systems, Sundararajan said, according to the agency report.

Across an ocean, Darien Huss, a 28-year-old research engineer for the cybersecurity firm Proofpoint, was doing his own analysis. The only way to get the key to unlock your photos, documents and music is to erase your hard drive or pay a ransom.

While Microsoft said that it had already released patches for the vulnerabilities exploited by the leaked tools, another hacking group apparently used one of the leaked tools to create the WannaCry ransomware. Instead of warning Microsoft to fix this problem, the NSA kept quiet, presumably in order to use the flaw to access foreign intelligence targets running Microsoft operating systems.

Install Microsoft's official patch. On Sunday, Britain's Defense Secretary Michael Fallon would not deny reports that Britain's nuclear submarines used the same version of Windows that made them vulnerable to malware attacks.

To begin with, the worm has been nearly too successful, having hit more than 200,000 victims - many times more than are usually caught out by ransomware aimed at large organisations.

According to Kaspersky Labs, India is the third-most impacted country after Russian Federation and Ukraine.

It was too early to say who was behind the onslaught, which struck 100,000 organizations, and what their motivation was, aside from the obvious demand for money. He'd like governments to limit the creation of cyberweapons, just like they did for nuclear weapons.

"We need governments to consider the damage to civilians that comes from hoarding these vulnerabilities and the use of these exploits", continued Smith, explaining that this was why the company had called for a new "Digital Geneva Convention" - "including a new requirement for governments to report vulnerabilities to vendors, rather than stockpile, sell, or exploit them".

"This is not yet a conversation that has even begun, at least with the general public", Smith says.

"When any technique is shown to be effective, there are nearly always copycats", said Steve Grobman, chief technology officer of McAfee, a security company in Santa Clara, California. "Microsoft has a very strong position that is an absolute, whereas my position is a little bit more balanced", Grobman says.

He accused the Government of "raiding" NHS capital budgets to fund day-to-day spending - a stance backed by Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers. For example, the U.S.is fighting a war and the military needs to take down a power plant, and there are only two options: "to drop a bomb on it, or to use a cyberattack to temporarily disable it".

The state-run Korea Internet and Security Agency said a total of 15 suspected cases were reported in Korea and 12 were confirmed as of 5 p.m. Tuesday.

Clearly, there is a difference of opinion among tech leaders.

In the USA, "the list of victims is very small", a Department of Homeland Security official tells NPR, noting that it's still relatively early in the WannaCry attack.


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