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The blame game, ransomware edition: Who's at fault?

They are having more luck dissecting flaws that limited its spread. The report also said that employees have been made aware about the dangers of clicking on fraudulent links and unsolicited emails, which are two of the ways the malware is downloaded onto a computer system and subsequently enters a computer network of an organisation.

"Hopefully people are learning how important it is to apply these patches", said Darien Huss, a senior security research engineer for cybersecurity firm Proofpoint, who helped stem the reach of the weekend attack.

A loose-knit team of security researchers scattered across the globe said they had collaborated to develop a workaround to unlock the encryption key for files hit in the global attack, which several independent security researchers have confirmed.

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The Verizon 2017 Data Breach Investigations Report, the most comprehensive annual survey of security breakdowns, found that it takes three months before at least half of organisations install major new software security patches. That happened here with some systems of Windows.

Most of the antivirus software are unable to protect your system from ransomware, so you have to make sure that you are using the right one. Ensure that user and entity behavior analytics, network traffic analysis and security information, and event management systems are flagging unusual behavior, that issues are being triaged, and that incident handlers are responsive. WannaCry targets and encrypts 176 types of files, including documents, images and multimedia files. Hackers will sometimes encourage you to keep your computer on and linked to the network, but don't be fooled. Many organizations without updated backups may decide that regaining access to critical files, such as customer data, and avoiding public embarrassment is worth the cost. A recent letter by the group claims there are vulnerabilities in Windows 10 as well, and if the company doesn't have security fix for these already, it could cause even more chaos.

Still, "My answer is, never pay the ransom", Abrams said. "Despite appearing to be criminal activity meant to raise money, it appears that less than $70,000 has been paid in ransoms and we are not aware of payments that have led to any data recovery".

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