Global cyber-attack: How roots can be traced to the US

Cesar Mills
May 19, 2017

Regardless of the ethics questions about how these agencies should best carry out their duty of protecting the public, the decision will likely end up as a political one, about how the government should use its power.

Some 47 NHS trusts fell victim to these ransomware attacks resulting in devastating consequences for some patients, as operations were cancelled and medical records held for ransom. By that time, Microsoft had discovered the bug on its own and issued a security update, but many users with older versions of Windows no longer receive such updates. "More action is needed, and it's needed now", Smith said adding that "Microsoft is committed to doing its part". Data of the users who transacted from ATM machines of Hitachi were compromised during three months of May, June and July a year ago.

Smith said that Microsoft proposed in February a new "Digital Geneva Convention" that would include a new requirement for governments to report software vulnerabilities to vendors, rather than stockpile, sell or exploit them.

Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Guangdong and Jiangxi province were most affected, a report released by 360 Threat Intelligence Center on Saturday said. "If they don't have an automatic update mechanism and they don't apply patches manually, they're going to be at risk - it's as simple as that".

"Who's culpable are the criminals that distributed it and the criminals that weaponized it", Bossert said.

Users still running that operating system were vulnerable to an attack. "MeitY has also requested Microsoft India to inform all their partners and customers to apply relevant patches", the ministry said in a statement.

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Nemeroff's research suggests that a large majority of enterprises (about 85% in a recent survey) have yet to upgrade to Windows 10. But Microsoft actually issued a patch for this particular flaw back in March, and people who installed it immediately were presumably unaffected by WannaCry.

Rob Enderle, principal analyst with Enderle Group, agreed. But some sort of agreement by governments to not stockpile vulnerabilities that can be exploited by bad guys is needed.

What versions of Windows are affected?

The NSA may know of hundreds, or even thousands, of them.

Ultimately, "Microsoft will take a lot of heat for this, but in this instance, they performed as rapidly as they could, they have a right to be [angry]".

Microsoft is blaming the US government.

According to Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Cyber Security Dan Tehan, a handful of Australian businesses have been hit in the attack.

Other reports by GizPress

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