Cybersecurity shares surge as WannaCry ransomware continues to wreak havoc

Joanna Estrada
May 22, 2017

Wu Yunkun, president of 360 Business Security Group, told chinadaily.com.cn to curb the virus's spread, the company had provided eight versions of warning notices, seven fix guides and six fix tools to their government and enterprises customers as of Monday morning. The market staged a dramatic rally on Wednesday, with prices climbing 4.2% to $1,789.78 at 7:43 a.m. ET, according to CoinDesk BPI.

In the wake of the recent WannaCry Ransomware cyber attacks, the Noida cyber cell issued an advisory warning the users to take necessary instructions to prevent such attacks by the malware.

India was the third worst hit nation by ransomware WannaCry as more than 40,000 computers were affected even though no major corporate or bank reported disruption to their activities raising doubts whether these entities are disclosing attack at all. It said that the US had "no credible evidence" to support a ban on Chinese tech companies in the USA following the cyberattack.

Lawrence Abrams, a New York-based blogger who runs BleepingComputer.com, says many organizations don't install security upgrades because they're anxious about triggering bugs, or they can't afford the downtime. As a result, the coin's value surged 125% in 2016, making it the world's best-performing currency.

It is important to note that WannaCry takes advantage of a vulnerability in Windows systems for which Microsoft released a patch in March of this year.

Some companies, government agencies, individuals, and nonprofits lack the resources to upgrade from Windows XP to later versions, especially in the developing world, where XP was widely pirated.

Most of the antivirus software are unable to protect your system from ransomware, so you have to make sure that you are using the right one.

Windows 10, the latest version of Microsoft's flagship operating system franchise, accounts for another 15 per cent, while older versions of Windows including 8.1, 8, XP and Vista, account for the remainder, BitSight estimated. Shares in the Purefunds ISE Cyber Security ETF, an exchange-traded fund that tracks cybersecurity companies, closed the day up 3.2 percent.

The U.S. does not have strong and clear policies with which to handle this problem.

The ongoing attack, which specifically targets Microsoft operating systems, made headlines last week after it compromised one of the UK's largest hospital systems. In most OSes, applications can read, write, and delete any file "owned" by a user years after ransomware began its rise.

The exploit was part of a set of Windows flaws that a group that calls itself the Shadow Brokers says it stole from the NSA and then tried to sell. Last week most of the intrusions were in Europe, with some in the USA, and this week it's spread to Asia, affecting about 200,000 computers (and climbing).

"Install the official patch from Microsoft that closes the vulnerability used in the attack".

"We haven't seen many organisations fall over and that's because they did some of the security basics", he said. He added the software helps recover the prime numbers of the RSA private key that are used by WannaCry.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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