(Newswire.net — May 13, 2017) — Up to one hundred countries reported ransomware virus have encrypted their data, as hackers have demanded bitcoins to unlock it.
Major world companies and institutions reported that the data stored on Windows-based servers have been encrypted, denying access to their administrators. As the attack disabled data retrieval, the onscreen message says that access would be restored once the entity pays a certain amount of bitcoins.
The ransomware virus spread over all continents within hours. At least two major hospitals in Indonesia reported data on their patients have been compromised amid the “ransomware” cyberattack.
According to Semuel Pangerapan, a director general at Indonesia’s Communication and Information Ministry, “efforts to localize the infected server are underway to prevent (the ransomware) from spreading.”
India is known as one of the most advanced countries in the domain of coding and encryption, but it is also struggling to locate the source of the attack and crack the encryption.
Following the “ransomware” cyberattack, French auto giant Renault has discontinued production, AFP reported. According to Renault’s representative, the production has been halted in order to prevent the virus from affecting company’s still uninfected servers.
British internet security companies struggle “round the clock” to restore hospital computer systems in the country after the attack that has caused delays in providing medical care.
It is not yet known whether any payment has been made or whether any encryption has been lifted. The UK authorities claim that no personal data on patients from the struck hospitals has been stolen, just locked, in what may be the most massive cyberattack in history.
According to British Home Secretary Amber Rudd, 45 public health organizations were hit, but no patient’s data has been stolen. The authorities, however, can’t figure out who is behind this unprecedented attack.
“That work is still ongoing. We don’t know anymore about where it has come from at the moment. We know it has affected up to 100 countries and it wasn’t targeted at the National Health Service (NHS),” Rudd told AFP, adding that it is more likely that there is an organization rather than individual behind the virus.
It is not known what damage the virus has caused in the United States given a large number of companies that use Windows servers as platform, which are extremely vulnerable to such viruses. On the other side, Apple has a reason to celebrate, expecting this attack to encourage more companies to switch to Mac OS to protect their data from cyberterrorism.
In the wake of #WannaCry ransomware virus, Microsoft has released an urgent OS patch.