Ransomware epidemic puts our computers at risk
Petya ransomware epidemic puts our computers at risk
A new cyber attack has been causing digital chaos worldwide. The program, known as Petya, gains access to victims' files, encrypts them and demands for a US$300 (approx. RM1,417) worth of Bitcoins so the affected parties may gain control of their data again. Unlucky victims that have made the ransom payments are unable to access their computers due to Posteo blocking the email address used by the hackers to receive the funds.
Initially, it was believed that the ransomware was an update of its 2016 version, however researchers are now saying the program is entirely a new strain that borrowed some of Petya's code. While victims are able to manually block the program from gaining access to their computers, this is by no means a method to actually extinguish the program.
Petya is installed into companies networks through a Ukrainian MEDoc accounting software. Once access is gained, Petya disperses itself using the EternalBlue exploit. The program also spreads through user name and password acquisitions. Ukraine is the country with the highest number of victims suggesting that it was one of the primary targets of Petya. Other affected countries include China, India, Germany, France and Korea.
At present, there are no conclusive answers as to who is behind the attacks. Additionally, you may manually protect your computer from such attacks here.