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Rumor Mill News Reading Room, Current Archive

"Accidental hero" halts worldwide ransomware attack by registering domain name that turned out to be the kill switch

Posted By: MrFusion
Date: Saturday, 13-May-2017 11:23:42
www.rumormill.news/75293

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Accidental hero' halts ransomware attack and warns: this is not over
Expert who stopped spread of attack by activating software’s ‘kill switch’ says criminals will ‘change the code and start again’
- Cyber-attack hits dozens of countries – live updates
- Massive ransomware cyber-attack hits 74 countries around the world

Nadia Khomami in London and Olivia Solon in San Francisco
Saturday 13 May 2017 10.49 EDT

The “accidental hero” who halted the global spread of an unprecedented ransomware attack by registering a garbled domain name hidden in the malware has warned the attack could be rebooted.

The ransomware used in Friday’s attack wreaked havoc on organisations including FedEx and Telefónica, as well as the UK’s National Health Service (NHS), where operations were cancelled, X-rays, test results and patient records became unavailable and phones did not work.

But the spread of the attack was brought to a sudden halt when one UK cybersecurity researcher tweeting as @malwaretechblog, with the help of Darien Huss from security firm Proofpoint, found and inadvertently activated a “kill switch” in the malicious software.


Live Cyber-attack: May says 'no evidence' NHS patient records compromised – live
British prime minister thanks NHS staff for working overnight after attack of ‘unprecedented’ scale
Read more

The researcher, who identified himself only as MalwareTech, is a 22-year-old from south-west England who lives with his parents and works for Kryptos logic, an LA-based threat intelligence company.

“I was out having lunch with a friend and got back about 3pm and saw an influx of news articles about the NHS and various UK organisations being hit,” he told the Guardian. “I had a bit of a look into that and then I found a sample of the malware behind it, and saw that it was connecting out to a specific domain, which was not registered. So I picked it up not knowing what it did at the time.”

The kill switch was hardcoded into the malware in case the creator wanted to stop it spreading. This involved a very long nonsensical domain name that the malware makes a request to – just as if it was looking up any website – and if the request comes back and shows that the domain is live, the kill switch takes effect and the malware stops spreading. The domain cost $10.69 and was immediately registering thousands of connections every second.

~~~~~ continue at ~~~~~

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/may/13/accidental-hero-finds-kill-switch-to-stop-spread-of-ransomware-cyber-attack



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Articles In This Thread

"Accidental hero" halts worldwide ransomware attack by registering domain name that turned out to be the kill switch
MrFusion -- Saturday, 13-May-2017 11:23:42
JIM STONE says this accidental ransomware fix is CLICK BAIT and no blogger could read the NSA garbage which is not reader friendly
NaturalWisdom -- Saturday, 13-May-2017 13:13:23
MORE RANSOMWARE COMMENTS FROM JIM STONE
NaturalWisdom -- Saturday, 13-May-2017 13:20:01
Reader sent skeptical comments from another website
MrFusion -- Saturday, 13-May-2017 22:59:58
JIM STONE: It is suspicious and very likely that the NSA ran the entire attack to discredit & get rid of Bitcoin (when its price hit $1700)
NaturalWisdom -- Sunday, 14-May-2017 12:47:09
I find the "Young computer guy accidentally stopped it " story very believable.
hobie -- Sunday, 14-May-2017 18:11:03
New WannaCry 2.0, Major Cyber Attack War Is Not Over [VIDEO]
NaturalWisdom -- Sunday, 14-May-2017 15:53:12

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AN EXPLANATION OF THE FACTIONS