WannaCry Ransomware attacks, hits globally

Over the weekend, WannaCry Ransomware is all over the news as it attacks an estimated 200,000 systems around the world in more than 150 countries and the attack is not yet over.

What is WannaCry?

WannaCry is a terrifying type of Trojan Virus called ransomware targeting Microsoft Windows Operating System (those still running on exposed, unsupported operating systems were initially at risk such as Windows XP and Windows Server 2003). This type of virus holds the infected computer hostage and demands that the victim pay a ransom to gain access to the files on his or her computer.

How does it affect a computer?

There are various ways on how this virus is spread. Opening an attachment or links in phishing emails, downloading legitimate-looking programmes containing malwares can spread the virus. Machines running on outdated software and visiting a malicious website. Once the virus is inside a network, it can spread out and attack the other connected computers.

How do I know if I am a victim?

Once your computer or system is affected, the infected computer(s) display a message informing the system owner that their files has been encrypted, and payment is demanded (US$300 in bitcoin within three days or US$600 within seven days).

         (screenshot of the ransom note left on an infected system)


How can I protect my system?

  1. Ensure your systems are fully patched (particularly Microsoft Windows)
  2. Disseminate information about this virus with your staff and advise them not to click links in any suspicious looking email or open an attachment                          (If unsure, seek opinion of your IT Person).
  3. Ensure backups of critical systems have been performed and tested for recoverability.
  4. Migrate off Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 immediately


If system security concerns you, please call EHW Technology at 07 4944 0111 or email us at service@ehwtech.net.au and we will gladly assist you.