Mid-May of 2017 saw one of the largest global cyber-attacks ever. Ransomware has become all too common and computer hackers took advantage of a vulnerability in Microsoft Windows in what is being called the WannaCry attack. The hackers managed to affect computers worldwide. Thus far, the impact has been felt on over 230,000 computers in over 150 countries. The ongoing cyber-attack of the WannaCry ransomware computer worm targets the Microsoft Windows operating systems and seems to originate from an anonymous source but first was seen in April, 2016 by the hacking group Shadow Brokers.
The damage of WannaCry seems to be fairly widespread and has hit companies that use Telefonica, a Spanish broadband and telecommunications provider with operations in Europe, Asia, and North, Central, and South America. The attack has come down especially hard on hospitals and medical facilities in the United Kingdom and throughout Europe. While anyone who hasn’t updated their Windows PC recently is vulnerable, the good news is that attempts to contain the attack’s spread have paid off. The number of infected computers did not increase the week following the attack as many had expected.
If you are looking for ways to avoid being a victim of this attack take the advice of your IT Department or IT Consulting company. According to security company Bitdefender, follow these five steps:
- Disable your computer’s Server Message Block service.
- Install Microsoft’s patch.
- Backup your data on an offline hard drive.
- Install all Windows updates.
- Use a reputable security software to prevent attacks in the future.
Stay tuned for more updates on this attack and follow our biweekly blog at M&H Consulting.