Further to the outbreak of ‘WannaCry’ Ransomware on Friday which is said to be the biggest outbreak in history, the following detail is a high-level description of the key points thus far:
- The “cyber attack” is a type of attack known as ransomware
- It is estimated that in excess of 150 countries have been affected
- This has affected a number of GPs, hospitals and possibly whole NHS Trusts
- Medical providers in England, Scotland and Wales have been affected
- Some hospitals have been forced to refuse all but the most urgent emergency cases
- Many affected medical institutions claim their systems are no longer accessible and are reduced to pencil and paper
- Many multi-national companies have also been infected with the likes of Telefonica and Fedex
- With users returning to work on Monday, it is thought that infections will increase rapidly
The NHS has not been specifically targeted but has been one of the worst organisations hit due to the antiquated systems and their apparent reliance on old, unsupported software such as Windows XP. The below map illustrates infected computers across the globe and shows the severity of the attack.
Please read this blog here for further information on what Ransomware and Crypto Viruses are along with how to protect yourself.
What has Microsoft done to tackle it?
Microsoft issued a patch on the 14th March 2017 to protect users against this threat. If your hardware devices are kept up to date with the latest security updates and patches, then you are well protected.
How can you protect yourself?
All users should ensure that their computer software is always up to date. This includes all Microsoft patching and updates for Java and Adobe for example. Never download any software, apps or other programs from unofficial sources as this is a common method for hackers to secretly install Ransomware on your devices. Also, consider enhanced security products that have advanced features and threat protection to protect you from such threats.
What are we doing to help our customers?
In addition to the ten preventative steps in the above blog, San-iT’s remote management and monitoring software is ensuring that you are fully protected with the latest patches and software updates. In addition to this, if you are subscribed to San-iTs Advanced Email Security package then we have inbuilt Ransomware protection tool that prevents such viruses being able to execute in the first instance. Lastly, security experts have advised to make configuration changes to firewall protocols which will again stop the virus running in the first instance. San-iT engineers are working on this configuration across all customer sites.
If you are unsure or require any further information on Ransomware, please speak with our support engineers on 0161 359 3689.