Experts, therefore, believe that a global outbreak like the WannaCry ransomware attack should serve as a wakeup call for those using unlicenced software or outdated systems while not investing enough in security. "The good news is the infection rates have slowed over the weekend", he told reporters.
Malware cases have been spreading in recent years as the malicious software trend has been gaining ground, with new forms of ransomware hitting the scene.
The programme was designed in such a manner that when it lands on a system it locks up all files and encrypts them in a way that one can not access them anymore, until a ransom amount of $300 Bitcoin is paid-which defines the word ransomware.
Three variants of the ransomware have been detected. The first thing to do to protect yourself against this vicious type of ransomware is to install the security patches Microsoft issued to handle the vulnerability.
He further said that the exact size of this hacker group is unknown but it is no doubt a large worldwide criminal group. As Forbes reports, according to CrowdStrike's vice president of intelligence Adam Meyers, WannaCry initially spread via email spam, "in which fake invoices, job offers and other lures are being sent out to random email addresses". The malware has been identified using 27 different languages. However, there were speculations that some banks in Kerala, Andhra Pradesh had got affected by the cyber attacks.
Media outlets speculated the cyber attack could be related to a North Korean group, following computer code similarities found by a Google researcher. "I do not think that machines will be particularly vulnerable to such malware attacks, which encrypt files", said the chief executive of an ATM manufacturing company. "Attribution can be hard here". One source suggests that more than 10% of all desktop PCs run Windows XP, and a significant portion of those victims will likely be small businesses.
Given the magnitude of the attack, however, Microsoft did create and issue a patch for XP, but advised that organisations and individuals should always apply the latest software updates as soon as possible to protect against threats of this kind.
"The WannaCrypt exploits used in the attack were drawn from the exploits stolen from the National Security Agency, or NSA, in the United States", Smith said.
Udhav said WannaCry is one of the viruses which exploits this vulnerability adding,"No operating system is completely secure be it Windows, Mac or Linux or others, but there are certain OSs that are more susceptible to such attacks due to their popular usage and subsequent research carried on them".
"My answer is, never pay the ransom", Abrams said.
Well, wacko lunatic fringe conspiracy theorists might say that the NSA wanted that vulnerability to stay intact so they could use it for their own purposes, like spying on people's computers. "There have been isolated incidents in Kerala and Andhra Pradesh", said Union Electronics and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, adding that the government has formed a cyber coordination centre which would start operating from June to take precautions against cyber-attacks in future.
Security experts have speculated that the ransomware, which works by exploiting a vulnerability in older versions of Windows, came from a cache of hacking tools allegedly stolen from the NSA by hacker group Shadow Brokers.