Just over a month ago, WannaCry ransomware struck a massive blow that circled the globe. Now, as the dust has barely settled from its cyber attack, a new threat from Petya has appeared on the horizon.
Ransomware, a new criminal venture born in this century, invades and takes over computer systems. The owner/controller of a hijacked system is told they must pay the perpetrator, usually in bit coin, a type of digital currency, to regain control of their systems. Businesses and governments, who rely heavily on computerized systems today, are the usual targets of the crime.
It was originally thought that this was a phenomenon limited to the Ukraine, but incidents have been reported in other countries, including France, Spain, Russia, and India. The threat goes well beyond the borders of these countries as more and more of those in positions of power find they cannot access their computers.
A researcher of Kapersky, a forerunner in cyber security, suggests the new ransomware known as Petya malware, or Petrwrap, uses a false digital signature that mimics and overruns a weak link in Microsoft's seeming impenetrable security, known as Microsoft CVE- 2017-0199. There are others, however, who state that this may not be the case. Regardless, Rosneft, of Russia, and Oschadbank of Ukraine are just two of the global banks that have been adversely affected by the ransomware.
It is believed that Petya, much like WannaCry, was developed by the National Security Agency, and was known as EternalBlue. It was leaked by hackers in April of 2017, before the chaos brought on by WannaCry.
Many feel that those in power did not take WannaCry's threat seriously, not taking further preventative measures when they should. Now, Petya malware, which has been around for a while, seething beneath the surface, may wreak enough havoc to make them regret their lack of action.
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