Wednesday, 20 June, 2018

FedEx confirms it hit by malware attack

Kayla Schwartz | 14 May, 2017, 11:04

FedEx Corp.is confirming that it is suffering a malware attack.

Analysis The WannaCrypt ransomware worm, aka WanaCrypt or Wcry, today exploded across 74 countries, infecting hospitals, businesses including Fedex, universities, at least one national telco, and more organizations.

MalwareTech, a security researcher, reported 1,600 organizations in the USA have been infected with the ransomware. The official was not authorized to be publicly named. "They said the system was down and that they can not transfer anyone till the computer system was back up", Brennan said.

F-Secure on Friday says it's gotten reports from more than 60 countries.

This is perhaps the biggest ransomware attack recorded in history.

"Affected machines have six hours to pay up and every few hours the ransom goes up", said Kurt Baumgartner, the principal security researcher at security firm Kaspersky Lab.

He and others say the malware takes advantage of an exploit purportedly identified by the National Security Agency.

In an update after midnight local time, Russia's Interior Ministry acknowledged to state-run Tass media that its computers had also been hit.

"I don't believe it will have been a targeted attack, but will simply have been that the ransomware has sought out those organizations that are running susceptible devices", he said.

Volk added that ministry experts are now working to recover the system and do necessary security updates. The committee denied the reports.

Spain's Gas Natural, and the electrical company Iberdrola have also been hit in this attack. "Regardless, it is spreading through infected networks using the EternalBlue vulnerability, infecting additional unpatched systems".

The security leak from the NSA put all these tools available to the public to use howsoever they wanted. It's the ransomware transmission and remote installation, rather, that appears to rest on the EternalBlue exploit patched by Microsoft. The company's free antivirus software Windows Defender, along with other third-party security products from those including Kaspersky Lab and Avast, will also detect and remove the threat.

The spokesman, Jan Op Gen Oorth, declined to give further details Friday so as not to jeopardize the ongoing investigations.

However, a hacker could change the code to create a new variant and try the ransomware attack again.

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Ransomware typically infiltrates computers via phishing emails - emails containing links or files, which if accessed, grant malware access to a user's computer.

"This is not targeted at the NHS, it's an worldwide attack and a number of countries and organizations have been affected", British Prime Minister Theresa May said. The malware enters large organizations' computer networks, such as those at British hospitals, when an employee clicks on an innocent-appearing attachment to open the file, and thus releases the ransomware.

Some universities in Italy are also reported to be crippled by the ransomware attack, which is now unfolding in Czech Republic, Russia, Japan, Taiwan, Ukraine and many other countries.

If your computer has been affected, there's no guarantee that paying the ransom will restore it, Gazeley said. But in past attacks, the payment demands multiplied to much larger sums in short order. The committee, the nation's top investigative agency, has rejected the claim. The National Health Service (NHS) issued an alert and confirmed infections at 16 medical institutions, but it remained unclear whether the incidents are connected with each other. The NHS said in a statement on Saturday that there was no evidence that patient information had been compromised. The attack froze computers at hospitals across the country, with some canceling all routine procedures.

These exploits, once identified by software developers, are removed in subsequent security updates.

Victims of the attack are confronted with a pop-up window that tells them their files are now encrypted and that they need to send $300 in bitcoin to unlock them.

The attack came as Spain's National Cryptologic Center announced a "massive ransomware attack" against Spanish companies.

That code might then be able to exploit vulnerabilities in the computer's code to spread across any network it was a part of, said Philip Reitinger, president of the non-profit Global Cyber Alliance.

It said the attacks had not affected the companies' services or data protection of their clients.

Microsoft issued software patches to close the vulnerability in its operating systems two months ago, but many computer systems around the world have not yet been updated, or instead rely on older equipment that remains vulnerable to attack.

"This attack was not specifically targeted at the NHS and is affecting organisations from across a range of sectors".

According to the National Health Service, by mid-afternoon United Kingdom time, 16 NHS organizations had been hit with the attack, in some cases requiring emergency patients to be directed to other hospitals after infected computers were shut down. Several British hospitals say they are having major computer problems Hospitals in London, northwest En.

Two security firms - Kaspersky Lab and Avast - said they had identified the malicious software behind the attack in upward of 70 countries, although both said the attack has hit Russian Federation hardest. The NHS is thought to have been particularly hard hit because of the antiquated nature of its IT infrastructure.

Hospitals across England have canceled appointments and turned away patients after suffering an apparent cyberattack. St Bartholomew's Hospital in London, one of the victims, received warnings earlier this year that computers using Windows XP were vulnerable, reported the technology news site the Inquirer. The onslaught forced hospitals to cancel or delay treatments for thousands of patients, even some with serious aliments like cancer.

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