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Cyber attack hits CHERNOBYL radiation system: ‘Goldeneye’ ransomware strikes

27/06/2017

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4643752/Europe-hit-new-WannaCry-virus.html

Chernobyl’s radiation monitoring system has been hit by the attack with its sensors shut down while UK advertising giant WPP, the largest agency in the world, among dozens of firms affected.

The ransomware appears to have been spread through popular accounting software and specifically targeted at bringing down business IT systems.

The outage began in Ukraine as the country’s power grid, airport, national bank and communications firms were first to report problems, before it spread rapidly throughout Europe.

Companies in the US, Germany, Norway, Russia, Denmark and France are among those to have confirmed issues so far

 Users are being shown a message saying their data has been encrypted, with some asking for £300 in anonymous currency Bitcoin to retrieve it (pictured, an ATM in Ukraine)

More than 200,000 victims in 150 countries were infected by that software, which originated in the UK and Spain last month, before spreading globally.

But cyber security experts have warned that this time the virus is much more dangerous because it has no ‘kill switch’ and is designed to spread rapidly though networks.

Marcus Hutchins, who foiled the previous WannaCry attack by discovering a way to stop it from infecting new computers, told MailOnline that even if users pay the fee their files could now be lost forever.

He said: ‘The company that hosts the email account which the ransomware asks you to contact has closed the account. There’s no way to get files back.

‘It’s early days – we don’t know if we can find a fix yet. But if it’s decryptable we will find a way.’

Hutchins, 22, continued: ‘Everyone’s looking at this right now and I’m working with other researchers.

‘I was just praying it wasn’t the Wannacry exploit again. Ideally we’ll have to find a way to decrypt the files or else people are not going to get them back.’

The ransomware targets computers using the Windows XP operating system which have not installed the latest security updates released by Microsoft.

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