WannaCry, the fearsome ransomware data security threat has been all the rage recently, with over 300,000 computers infected worldwide. Now, another similar vulnerability the ransomware took advantage of was discovered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and it only took the researchers 15 minutes to develop a new malware designed to abuse it.
The new vulnerability was announced on Wednesday. According to Rebekah Brown of Rapid7, a data security company, not one hacker has exploited the vulnerability in the last 12 hours since its discovery.
Rapid7 reports that 100,000 computers are running an outdated version of Samba, which is a free networking software for Unix and Linux computers. However, there are likely to be many more. Structurally, some of the computers are company property, with the majority belonging to home users.
The researchers believe that North Korea was behind the first iteration of WannaCry, the fearsome ransomware that encrypts your files and demands a ransom in Bitcoin. Some industry experts believe that Lazarus, a combination of North Korean hackers, was behind the attack.
However, looking at the financial returns of WannaCry, the total ransom paid was less than $91,000 (£70,000), making the link to North Korea less likely to be correct.
So, what can you do to protect yourself against similar types of attacks? Here are some quick tips:
– Use two-factor authentication
– Encrypt all internet traffic by using a VPN
– Make your passwords longer and use numbers and symbols
– Monitor computer processes
– Do not open links or email attachments received from suspicious sources