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WannaCry ransomware attacks some 300 users in CzechRep

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Prague, May 15 (CTK) – About 300 cases of the WannaCry ransom-demanding programme have been registered in the Czech Republic since Friday, CZ.NIC association’s security expert Pavel Basta announced, adding that the number of attacked users did not markedly rise on Monday.

CZ.NIC operates the CSIRT.CZ National Security Team.

According to the Eset anti-virus firm, the WannaCry attack has touched on the Czech Republic only marginally.

“During the weekend, we registered fewer than 200 afflicted devices. We have not registered any significant institution to be paralysed, not even partially, by the programme,” Robert Suman, who heads Eset’s detection centre in Prague, said.

Experts from the DCIT company said the sum the racketeers have gained from the victims is relatively low for now.

“By noon today, the masterminds of the worldwide attack have gained only some 30 Bitcoins, an equivalent of 53,000 USD. Fewer than 200 victims have paid so far. In financial terms, the attack is incomparably smaller than, for example, the volumes of Internet frauds involving payment cards,” Karel Miko, from DCIT, said.

The recent cyber attacks are not expected to afflict the two Czech nuclear power plants either.

“The nuclear power plants operation computer systems are completely separated from the outer world, their operation is isolated in order to prevent their disturbance from outside,” Ladislav Kriz, spokesman for the state co-owned CEZ energy utility, which operates the two plants, told CTK.

Since Friday, WannaCry has hit up to 200,000 computers worldwide, focusing on those with Microsoft’s old operational system Windows XP, which is still widely used in the world.

In the Czech Republic, it makes up 4.4 percent and it is the sixth most used operational system.

Experts from the Acronis company say the WannaCry-blocked data are impossible to unblock by deciphering, and not even the payment of the ransom guarantees the user’s access to them.

WannaCry tends to spread fast across unprotected company networks and infect all devices within them.

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