Ransomware Cyber Attacks Wreck Havoc Globally, India Escapes Major Damage

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| May 16 , 2017 , 10:24 IST
[caption id="attachment_262111" align="aligncenter" width="700"]Representational Image Representational Image[/caption] The WannaCry ransomware cyber attack has claimed around 2 lakh victims across 150 countries so far, combing its malware attacks from both Friday and Monday, however, India remained relatively safe. The second wave of cyber attacks that were predicted to occur on Monday using more enhanced encryption making it more difficult to repair did not happen, but the world was still reeling from the recent ransomware attack. According to a report from The Hindu, Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said barring “isolated incidents” in Kerala and Andhra Pradesh, there had been no major impact of the attack. ALSO READ: Global Cyber Attack ‘Ransomware’ Costed The World USD 70,000 The malware attack began on Friday which encrypted data on infected computer systems and would hold 'ransom' the data until the victim paid via Bitcoin to recover the data. Since the global attack was launched on Friday, several thousand more computers were discovered to be infected, particularly in Asia as the work day began on Monday. IT Minister Prasad revealed that government had issued an advisory in March itself, informing administrators about the 'software patch' in Microsoft which could be used against a possible attack. He added that the EternalBlue exploit of Windows that the malware uses to spread was already known and accordingly the systems run by the National Informatics Centre, which maintains the government’s online infrastructure, were secure. An official cyber coordination centre is expected to launch operations by June which will take precautions against such attacks. ALSO READ: Massive Cyber-Attack: ‘Ransomware’ Wreaks Havoc Worldwide, Hits 99 Countries In Kerala, workers from village offices in Wayanad, Pathanamthitta, Kollam and Thrissur districts reported infected computer as did staff from the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams. Car-maker Nissan's Chennai plants were also affected by the ransomware attack but normal operations were soon restored. IT major firms Infosys and Wipro reportedly were unaffected as they monitor threats independently on a regular basis. The banking sector faced threats on the front-end software resulting in the shut-down of ATMs in several areas pending the upgrade of their operating software. The core financial systems remained secure as they had stronger defences. Internationally, China reported of 40,000 organisations being impacted, while the National Health Service of the U.K. was also hit badly. Russia also was among the worst affected.