Massive cyber attack strikes systems across Europe
May 13, Berlin: A huge cyber-attack using tools believed to have been developed by the US National Security Agency has struck businesses around the world.
According to reports, in April hackers known as The Shadow Brokers had claimed to have stolen the tools and released them online. Microsoft however had released a patch for the vulnerability in March, but many systems may not have been updated.
There have been reports of infections in 99 countries, including the UK, US, China, Russia, Spain, Italy and Taiwan.
Cyber-security firm Avast said it had seen 75,000 cases of the ransomware - known as WannaCry and variants of that name - around the world."This is huge," said Jakub Kroustek at Avast.
Many researchers say the incidents appear to be linked, but say it may not be a coordinated attack on specific targets.
Meanwhile wallets for the digital cryptocurrency Bitcoin that were seemingly associated with the ransomware were reported to have started filling up with cash.
Similarly, the UK's National Health Service (NHS) has been hit and screenshots of the WannaCry program were shared by NHS staff.
The Oslo Times International News Network