Australia and NZ largely escape global cyber attack

Australia and NZ largely escape global cyber attack

An global manhunt was well under way for the plotters behind the world's biggest-ever computer ransom assault.

A cyber attack named "WannaCry", which affected more than 200,000 people in over 150 countries over the weekend, has made its way to Australia.

Railway stations, mail delivery, gas stations, hospitals, office buildings, shopping malls and government services also were affected, China's Xinhua News Agency said, citing the Threat Intelligence Center of Qihoo 360, an internet security services company.

"On Monday morning at the start of the new working week, it's likely that successful attacks from Friday that haven't yet become apparent will become apparent", he said.

Europol executive director Rob Wainwright told Britain's ITV television on Sunday that the attack had been "unprecedented".

The cross-border police agency Europol said the situation was now "stable", defusing concerns that attacks that struck computers in British hospital wards, European vehicle factories and Russian banks would spread further at the start of the working week.

Thousands more infections were reported Monday, largely in Asia, which had been closed for business when the malware first struck Friday.

Wainwright described the cyberattack as an "escalating threat". "The numbers are going up, I am anxious about how the numbers will continue to grow when people go to work and turn (on) their machines on Monday morning", Europol Director Rob Wainwright said. Download the security update right away to prevent the WannyCry ransomware from inflicting further damage. Back up your data on an offline hard drive. 4.

Payment is demanded within three days or the price is doubled and, if no payment is received within seven days, the locked files will be deleted, according to the screen message.

The malware communicates using the anonymising Tor network and demands payments in the equally anonymous currency, bitcoin, making tracing those behind the attack more complicated.

"We have seen no impact on our critical infrastructure, we have seen no impact in the health systems which is important, we have had no reports of any government agencies, state, territories or commonwealth impacted by this", MacGibbon said.




"It only guarantees that the malicious actors receive the victim's money, and in some cases, their banking information".

The virus exploits a vulnerability in Microsoft Windows software, first identified by the US National Security Agency, experts have said.

A hacking group called Shadow Brokers released the malware in April, claiming to have discovered the flaw from the NSA, Kaspersky said.

"The recent attack is at an unprecedented level and will require a complex global investigation to identify the culprits", said Europol, Europe's police agency.

The attack therefore spread faster than previous, smaller-scale ransomware attacks. "You're only safe if you patch ASAP", he tweeted.

A British cyber expert was hailed an "accidental hero" after he registered a domain name that unexpectedly stopped the spread of the virus, which exploits a vulnerability in Microsoft Windows software. "There were the same attacks applied to Nissan on Friday and in other areas of the economy and indeed around the world", Mr Fallon said.

Anti-virus experts Symantec said the majority of organisations affected were in Europe.

The government is not legally bound to notify at-risk companies.

He said few banks in Europe had been affected, having learned through the "painful experience of being the number one target of cyber-crime" the value of having the latest cyber-security in place. The Central Bank of Russian Federation says it was able to detect the attack and stop it without any information being compromised.

French carmaker Renault said its Douai plant, one of its biggest sites in France employing 5,500 people, would be shut on Monday as systems were upgraded.

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