Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

Microsoft was hoarding patches for WannaCry exploit

Microsoft was hoarding patches for WannaCry exploit

But he also blamed the governments. A "critical" patch had been issued by Microsoft on March 14 to remove the underlying vulnerability for supported systems, almost two months before the attack, but many organizations had not yet applied it.

WannaCry ransomware had spread using a loophole in Microsoft windows operating systems that were initially found by the USA national security agency (NSA), which according to reports was using it in order to find a way to hack networks of terrorist groups, and was leaked by Shadow Brokers, which said that it had found the tools in agency's servers which the group had breached earlier. "This is one reason we called in February for a new "Digital Geneva Convention" to govern these issues, including a new requirement for governments to report vulnerabilities to vendors, rather than stockpile, sell, or exploit them". "We need governments to consider the damage to civilians that comes from hoarding these vulnerabilities and the use of these exploits", he said.

According to Microsoft, the affected computers did not have security patches. He noted, however, the complexity that can be involved in patching a security hole.

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Experts are suspecting that the next wave of attacks will be subjected to the banking sector. It essentially relies on victims clicking on or downloading the attachment, which causes the program to run and infect your computer with ransomware. Multiple backups also help. In most instances, WannaCry managed to take control of networks because administrators had delayed the installation of the patches, leaving their PCs at risk for longer.

"It's not rocket science", Litan said.

The cyber-attack has disrupted NHS services in parts of England and Scotland since Friday afternoon. Asked what the company is doing to prevent such exploitations, he cited "basic IT security blocking and tackling". Speaking about the same, Dinesh Yadav, Centre for Cyber Crime Investigation, Noida told Indian Express, "WannaCry encrypts core system files and the operating system stops functioning".

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The U.S. National Security Agency alerted Microsoft of a critical vulnerability that was eventually used to carry out the massive WannaCry ransomware attack that hit more than 300,000 computers worldwide last week, the Washington Post reported.

"Software updates and security patches are pushed to us as needed so that we are using the most current approved versions of software on our computers". If they caught, that is.

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