WannaCry Ransomware Spreads to 150 Countries With New Variations

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This attack used malware called "WannaCry" (sometimes called Wcry), and it infected more than 100,000 computers in over 150 countries, ranging from Brazil to Ukraine; no part of the world was untouched. At the National Health Service, many computers still run the outdated Windows XP software, which Microsoft has stopped supporting. While a United Kingdom security researcher managed to stop the spread of the virus, hackers have issued new versions that cybersecurity organizations are trying to counter and stamp out.

"Ransomware attack appears to be causing glitches at many ATMs that work on Random Access Memory (RAM)".

NSA officials defended how they handed the EternalBlue matter, arguing that the NSA must use such tools to gather foreign intelligence.

NHS England said that, as of 3pm on Monday, two hospitals remained on divert following the attack, down from seven on Sunday. "The current variant will make its way into anti-virus software". He said the situation was under control.

But the larger questions surrounding cyber security persist.

Europol Director Rob Wainwright told the BBC that businesses should ensure that their systems are updated with the latest security patches in order to mitigate chances of further infection and to slow the spread of the ransomware.

"This attack provides yet another example of why the stockpiling of vulnerabilities by governments is such a problem", he said.

It was "too early to say" what the overall cost of the attack to public coffers would be, he said.

Asked why a £5 million contract with Microsoft to protect the XP machines had been terminated, the spokesman said £50 million had been made available to NHS bodies for cyber security in the 2015 spending review.

As for Europe, such malicious software spread last Friday and blocked computer equipment in many health centers in the United Kingdom, as well as in companies and organizations in Spain, France, Germany and Russian Federation, among other countries of the so-called old continent.

"In the meantime, the college has provided our members with guidance and resources to support them through this challenging time and we will continue to monitor the situation and reassure patients that Global Positioning System and their teams are doing all they can to provide safe care".

The ransomware, called "WannaCry", is spread by taking advantage of a Windows vulnerability that Microsoft released a security patch for in March.

Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said it was "on alert" over the weekend but was not thought to have been affected.

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