Microsoft's free custom support could have stopped 'WannaCrypt'

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Sadly many organizations left themselves vulnerable to attack by WannaCry by either failing to run Microsoft's patch or through using Windows XP machines. The sobering experience of WannaCry must at least cause them to prioritize patching in a way that until now they have not.

A decade-old form of malicious software known as ransomware has been making headlines after cybercriminals hijacked hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide. Once those corrupted emails or files are opened, not only does the virus encrypt files from a long list of file types, but it also scans the networks connected to that computer in search of similar vulnerabilities so that it can spread to other file systems and computers, and eventually hold entire file systems hostage.

Train your employees on how to spot phishing emails. Industry experts said the UAE was lease affected because the ransomware attack peaked on a non-working day in the country. WannaCry should not have reached disastrous proportions - Microsoft released a patch that could close the vulnerability in March, well before the NSA's tool was released in usable form. "Microsoft knew about this vulnerability - how widely it could get exploited", he said.

It's largely a question of resources and attention.

Many security experts speculate that the attack could be executed by hackers that are affiliated with a particular government, marking a critical juncture in the cybersecurity era: it could go down as the first time a digital weapon developed by the USA government had been stolen by global cybercriminals and unleashed against doctors, hospitals, patients, businesses, government agencies, and ordinary citizens alike.

The latest ransomware attack sent the world into turmoil this week.

In classic cybercriminal form, the hackers designed the ransomware to increase the amount demanded on a set schedule, threatening to delete hijacked data after a stated amount of time. Paying encourages criminals to launch further attacks. "However, according to experts at Norton, in 2016 only 47 percent of victims who paid ransoms recovered their data".

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We must be better prepared for the next cyberattack, whenever it comes and in whatever form it takes. The spread and disruption of WannaCry "is a powerful reminder that information technology basics like keeping computers current and patched are a high responsibility for everyone, and it's something every top executive should support".

What we need is a change in attitude. "Patch your systems now!" "As a result, hospitals, businesses, governments, and computers at homes were affected". Unfortunately, the only source for identifying the attack seems to be a single source - so, in other words, beware what you hear about it.

Global software giant Microsoft could have prevented the WannaCry ransomware from reaching epidemic proportions globally and become a hero for millions of people, but lure of monetary gain stopped it from taking the right decision. Here are some tips from security experts. Nevertheless, the risk to these devices is real, and avoidable, Plus, there are risks beyond security to using devices with obsolete operating systems. The lesson: Avoid clicking links inside dubious emails, Mr Kamden said.

Backup data: Regularly create and keep secure backups of your most important files and data.

With computers across Britain's National Health Service displaying ransom notes, appointments and operations were postponed because of the unavailability of patient data.

CMIT Solutions delivers this kind of protection to many of our clients.

The Russian central bank confirmed there were some isolated cases but they were dealt with quickly and recommendations to update any Windows software were twice issued to all banks in the wake of the attacks.

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