Recently there has been a lot of buzz about malicious software Ransomware. This software has affected more than ten thousands of computers in 150 countries .It also forced Brit hospital to turn away patients and Spanish companies as Telefonica to reach a point of global outbreak.

What is ransomware?

Ransomware is a program that gets into your computer, either by clicking on the wrong thing or downloading the wrong thing. You then have to pay a certain amount as random to open the file and save it from encryption

What is WannaCry?

WannaCry  is a a type of ransomware that locks up the files on your computer in a way that you cannot access them anymore. It also has names like WanaCrypt0r 2.0, WannaCry and WCry.

The worse part about WannaCry is that it is not just a program but also a worm which can get into your computer and look for other computer so that they can try and spread it as far as possible.

How does it work and spread?

The WannaCry program encrypts your files and demands payment in bitcoin in order to regain access. In fact the trouble is that there is simply no assurance that you will be granted access after the payment. At times ransomware files up more stakes after some days and demands more money threatening to delete files as well.

Where has it spread?

Ransomware looks to be targeting a wide range of counties and has affected almost 150 countries in the world. The broad based ransomware attack has appeared in at least eight Asian nations and a dozen countries in Europe. It has also affected Turkey, United Arab Emirates and Argentina.

Who is behind this cyber-attack?

WannaCry is believed to have been developed by the United States’ National Security Agency (NSA), which became public last month through the Windows computer. This program was among a large number of hacking tools and other files that a group named Shadow Brokers released on Internet. The group obtained this from a secret NSA server. Although the identity of Shadow Brokers is unknown it is  believed  that they surfaced in 2016 is linked to the Russian government.

How can you be safe?

WannaCry exploits vulnerability in Microsoft and that Microsoft patched this in March. People don’t always install updates and patches on their computers and so this means vulnerabilities can remain open a lot longer and make things easier for hackers to get in.

Source: Times of India

Categories: Facts

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