Ransomware Attack Hits Businesses Across The World

Europol estimates that the attack has hit at least 150 countries and infected 200,000 machines.

The WannaCry worm locks users out of their computers and demands that victims pay hundreds of dollars to regain control of their information.

"This as not targeted at the NHS, it's an global attack, and a number of countries and organizations have been affected", she said.

"At the moment, we are in the face of an escalating threat".

A Microsoft exec blasted the NSA Sunday for its role in "stockpiling vulnerabilities" that led to a ransomware attack of historic proportions - as experts warned workers could discover further infections Monday morning.

"Unfortunately, there are some very smart and bad people out there who spend their times trying to make things worse for us, and this is not game over for us", he said.

He said governments should "treat this attack as a wake-up call" and "consider the damage to civilians that comes from hoarding these vulnerabilities and the use of these exploits".

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed. The city of Osaka said its home page went blank, although problems had not been detected otherwise.

"An equivalent scenario with conventional weapons would be the U.S. military having some of its Tomahawk missiles stolen", Smith wrote.

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In a blog post on Sunday, Microsoft President Brad Smith appeared to acknowledge that the ransomware attack used a hacking tool built by the US National Security Agency which leaked online in April.

British intelligence chiefs have warned that businesses must brace for further cyber attacks after the debilitating WannaCry virus swept through computers around the world in the past few days.

Ciaran Martin, chief executive of the National Cyber Security Centre, said the outbreak could continue to infect more systems and other victims may emerge.

Patients are being warned that some planned appointments will be cancelled as Newham University Hospital aims to recover from Friday's cyber attack.

Other organizations targeted worldwide included Germany's rail network Deutsche Bahn, Spanish telecommunications operator Telefonica, French carmaker Renault, US logistics giant FedEx and Russia's Interior Ministry.

A spokeswoman for NHS Digital told The Guardian that "given the timing of the attack, some parts of the NHS will not have clocked there is an issue", raising fears more systems could be affected for the first time today.

"These ransomware attacks have been on the rise over the last three years, it wasn't exactly something that was a shock - what was surprising is the scale of this one".

The new indiscriminate wave of attack began on Friday striking banks, hospitals and government agencies across the world.

"Staff are working hard to ensure that the small number of organisations still affected return to normal shortly".

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