WannaCry explained: What is WannaCry ransomware and how does it work?

The first thing to do to protect yourself against this vicious type of ransomware is to install the security patches Microsoft issued to handle the vulnerability. Even though there are ways to install the latest updates on updates on Windows which are not genuine, Microsoft is also implementing restrictions every once in a while, so depending on the release, it could be more or less hard to patch a pirated Windows copy.

The result paralyzed the computers of massive organizations across the globe and demanded an unlocking ransom of $300 in bitcoins.

Kaspersky Labs's Global Research and Analysis team points out that WannaCry starts with a remote code execution in Microsoft Windows, taking advantage of a vulnerability dubbed "EternalBlue". Now, the question is, how to protect yourself from the WannaCry Ransomware.

The so-called "WannaCry" virus wreaked havoc around the world in recent days by primarily infecting vulnerable Windows 7 computers connected to the internet, security ratings firm BitSight told Reuters on Friday.

Though the worm is primarily affecting business, individuals with PCs running Windows should still take a few precautions.

As some Microsoft users are running outdated Windows versions and didn't receive the security update, the company is making the update broadly available for download on Microsoft's website.

Apple's Mac computers were not targeted by this ransomware attack so are clear. Because numerous computers impacted run older Windows systems like XP, Microsoft issued a rare patch for XP, which it had stopped updating more than three years ago. Use a reputable security software to prevent attacks in the future. A 22-year old security researcher in the United Kingdom discovered a "kill-switch" to initially stop the spread of the attack.

While you may have already read about WannaCrypt, popularly dubbed as WannaCry, ransomware, and Microsoft's response to the same, here's the story in short before we get to identifying who's at fault.

Despite the reach of the malware, experts say the hackers have only made around $51,000 as of Monday, the day that the ransom doubles (if the computer was infected on Friday). It takes just one click on an infected link or email attachment to have the virus spread to other computers within the network.

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