Ransomware Infects Computers in Europe, Again

Reuters news agency reports today a major ransomware attack on Tuesday hit computers at Russia’s biggest oil company, the country’s banks, and Ukraine’s international airport. One of the victims of Tuesday’s cyber attack, a Ukrainian media company, said its computers were blocked and it had received a demand for $300 worth of the Bitcoin crypto-currency to restore access to its files. Other systems affected include; shipping giant A.P. Moller-Maersk offices in the Netherlands, Russian metal maker Evraz, French construction materials firm Saint Gobain, the world’s biggest advertising agency WPP, and food company Mondelez International.

Moscow-based cyber security firm Group IB said hackers had exploited code developed by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) which was leaked and then used in the WannaCry ransomware attack that caused global disruption in May. Researchers with multiple firms identified the ransomware as Petya, malware that makes computers inoperable by encrypting their hard drives and demands ransoms in exchange for a digital key to restore access. F-Secure Chief Research Officer Mikko Hypponen said, “It’s like WannaCry all over again. Nothing is stopping Petya now. This could hit the U.S.A. pretty bad.”

Reuters report found here.


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