Manhunt for hackers behind global cyberattack

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Manhunt for hackers behind global cyberattack

"The NCSC has been working in collaboration with a number of organisations in the cyber security community, including MalwareTech and 2SEC4, to understand and mitigate the current Wannacry ransomware threat".

"THIS is only the beginning", an expert has warned, as he likened infected computers to "zombies" who will keep spreading the ransomware virus which almost brought the NHS in Britain to its knees.

"In 2014, there was a one-year renewal of the protection system on the NHS systems which was not renewed and so systems are now not upgraded and not protected", Corbyn said.

Images appeared on victims' screens demanding payment of $300 in Bitcoin, saying: "Ooops, your files have been encrypted!"

Bart's Health, which runs several London hospitals, said it had activated its major incident plan, cancelling routine appointments and diverting ambulances to neighboring hospitals. Both said Russian Federation was hit hardest. "Today our engineers added detection and protection against new malicious software known as Ransom:Win32.WannaCrypt", Microsoft said in a statement on May 12, adding it was working with customers to provide additional assistance.

The malware is spread by taking advantage of a Windows vulnerability that Microsoft released a security patch for in March.

"The National Cyber Security Centre is working with all organisations here in the United Kingdom that have been affected and that's very important".

Ransomware attacks are on the rise around the world.

Ciaran Martin, who leads the UK's National Cyber Security Centre, said his team was doing everything in their power to get "vital services" back up and running. It is too early to tell.

"We maintain it with duct tape, bailing wire and the good graces of no small number of 'volunteer firefighters.' I am hopeful for a future with more formal, funded support for this foundation of our suddenly global information economy". Worldwide shipper FedEx Corp said some of its Windows computers were also breached.

French carmaker Renault's assembly plant in Slovenia halted production after it was targeted. The interior ministry said about 1,000 computers had been infected but it had localized the virus.

"We are spending around 50 million pounds on the NHS cyber systems to improve their security, we've encouraged the NHS trusts to reduce their exposure to the weakest system, the Windows XP. and there is money available to strengthen these systems", he said.

Germany's rail operator Deutsche Bahn said its station display panels were affected.

The ransomware hit universities, companies and hospitals in at least 99 countries.

Darien Huss, a 28-year-old research engineer who assisted the anonymous British researcher lauded a hero, said he was "still anxious for what's to come in the next few days because it really would not be so hard for the actors behind this to re-release their code without a kill switch or with a better kill switch".

The 22-year-old Britain-based researcher, identified online only as MalwareTech, explained Saturday that he spotted a hidden web address in the "WannaCry" code and made it official by registering its domain name.

A hacking group called Shadow Brokers released the malware in April claiming to have discovered the flaw from the NSA, Kaspersky said. This one worked because of a "perfect storm" of conditions, including a known and highly risky security hole in Microsoft Windows, tardy users who didn't apply Microsoft's March software fix, and malware created to spread quickly once inside university, business and government networks.

As part of the digital attack, the hackers, who have yet to be identified, had included a way of disabling the malware in case they wanted to shut down their activities.

"A lot of people in the security community were impressed with Microsoft's speed, but it highlights an ongoing challenge we have", said Stephen Cobb, a senior security researcher with ESET, a global security software company.

G7 finance ministers meeting in Italy discussed the attacks and were expected to commit to stepping up global cooperation against a growing threat to their economies. The danger will be discussed at the G7 leaders' summit next month.

Rudd said that all A&E departments are operating as normal, after chairing a meeting of Cobra, the government's emergency response committee, on Saturday afternoon, reports the Guardian.

Mikko Hypponen, chief research officer at the Helsinki-based cyber-security company F-Secure, called the attack "the biggest ransomware outbreak in history".

'But our immediate priority as a government is to disrupt the attack, restore affected services as soon as possible, and establish who was behind it so we can bring them to justice'.

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