If you’ve been around computers and the Internet over the last few years or so, you might be familiar with a nasty class of viruses called ransomware. If you are unfamiliar with the term, ransomware is “a type of malicious software designed to block access to a computer system until a sum of money is paid.”
In the past ten hours, Kaspersky Lab has tracked more than 45,000 attacks in 74 countries. The ransomware going around is called “WannaCry” which doesn’t sound very friendly to me. The WannaCry ransomware is spreading through an existing Windows exploit patched in March, “EternalBlue”.
Sixteen National Health Service organizations in the UK have already been targeted and some of the hospitals targeted have started canceling outpatient appointments and telling people to avoid emergency departments if possible. This new ransom appears to be around $300 to pay off the hackers from ruining your digital life. Even worse, if you take your time to pay them off, they’ll gladly increase the ransom amount as time goes on.
So how can you avoid being vulnerable to this new ransomware and not have to pay a bunch of hackers and avoid unnecessary trips to your local computer repair shop. Simply, run and allow security updates by Microsoft by utilizing the Windows Update service.
This ransomware is spreading fast due to the fact that whatever network an infected computer connects to, the ransomware will actively seek out as many systems on the network with the unpatched vulnerability and infect those systems as well.
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