2017 Ransomware Update
WannaCry malicious software has hit some of the world's largest companies as well as home computers across every continent, leading to PCs and data being locked up and held for ransom. The ransomware uses a vulnerability first revealed to the public as part of a leaked stash of NSA-related documents in order to infect Windows PCs and encrypt their contents, before demanding payments of hundreds of dollars for the key to decrypt files. The coordinated attack had managed to infect large numbers of computers less than six hours after it was first noticed by security researchers, in part due to its ability to spread within networks from PC to PC. Businesses are still dealing with the fallout from a cyberattack that hit 200,000 victims in 150 countries, with many organizations and individuals wondering if they are at risk.
Ransomware – a malicious piece of software that locks files on a computer and demands payments to unlock them – is the name of the type of virus that infected the machines. Ransomware attacks have been on the rise and this particular malware known as WannaCry was called "unprecedented" by Europol..