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Published On: Tue, May 16th, 2017

Cyberattack Is Blunted As Governments, Companies Gain Upper Hand

(Bloomberg) Governments and companies around the world began to gain the upper hand against the first wave of an unrivaled global cyberattack, even as the assault was poised to continue claiming victims this week.
More than 200,000 computers in at least 150 countries have so far been infected, according to Europol, the European Union’s law enforcement agency. The U.K.’s National Cyber Security Centre said new cases of so-called ransomware are possible “at a significant scale.”
“For now, it does not look like the number of infected computers is increasing,” said a Europol spokesman. “We will get a decryption tool eventually, but for the moment, it’s still a live threat and we’re still in disaster recovery mode.”
At Germany’s national Deutsche Bahn railroad, workers were laboring under “high pressure” Monday to repair remaining glitches with train stations’ electronic departure boards, a spokesman said.
French car-maker Renault SA, which halted production at some factories to stop the virus from spreading, said 90 percent of factories worldwide had now resumed operations, according to a spokesman Monday.
A new version of the ransomware may have also been spreading over the weekend. Matt Suiche, founder of United Arab Emirates-based cyber security firm Comae Technologies, said around 10,000 machines have been infected by the second variation of the malware.
The malware used a technique purportedly stolen from the U.S. National Security Agency. It affected the U.K.’s National Health Service, Russia’s Ministry of Interior, China government agencies, Deutsche Bahn, automakers Nissan Motor Co. and Renault, PetroChina, logistics giant FedEx Corp., and other company and hospital computer systems in countries from Eastern Europe to the U.S. and Asia.
The hackers used the tool to encrypt files within affected computers, making them inaccessible, and demanded ransom — typically $300 in bitcoin. Russia and Ukraine had a heavy concentration of infections, according to Dutch security company Avast Software BV.
Microsoft Corp. President Brad Smith, in a blog post Sunday, said the attack is a “wake-up call” for governments in the U.S. and elsewhere to stop stockpiling tools to exploit digital vulnerabilities. “They need to take a different approach and adhere in cyberspace to the same rules applied to weapons in the physical world,” he said.

See more: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-05-15/corporates-governments-fight-back-as-cyber-attack-spreads?cmpid=BBD051517_BIZ&utm_medium=email&utm_source=newsletter&utm_term=170515&utm_campaign=bloombergdaily

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