Recent events in the Microsoft OS arena have caused serious concern.
The worldwide infection of many Windows PCs has stirred up a hornets nest of accusations from all sides!
Simply put it’s a computer Worm; once activated on an un-patched Windows machine it toddles off and encrypts your files, then asks for a ransom, paid in BitCoins, to have your file ‘released’. It then traverses the network to the next machine and repeats the action.
The vulnerability is in the Operating System’s SMB, networking, software stack allowing the Worm to travel from PC to PC.
An interesting article on The Register can be read here, talking about what it is and what it does – it’s a scary bit of kit and everyone should make sure they backup all their files regularly and keep their OS fully patched at all times.
Interestingly I stumbled over a little comment on Social Media – pinch of salt required? – but it stated that the majority of systems affected were running Windows 7!
Remember if you have to use Windows then keep backups and keep it updated.
Also, don’t pay! There’s no guarantee you’ll get your files back – these are criminals after all!
I recently spent several a week ensuring all my companies servers were up to date. I can understand Windows 7 being the most commonly affected OS. Very few people use XP anymore, most use either Windows 7 or newer. In Windows 10, updates cannot be disabled so unless you have set your connection to metered you will get updates, so it is unlikely you would be affected. All versions of Windows appear to have SMBv1 enabled by default, but unless you have XP or you have a specific reason why you know you need it, there is no reason to keep it enabled.
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