Window XP Held Strong Against WannaCry – Despite Initial Reports
The ransomware that took the world by storm in mid-May was found to be far less successful on Windows XP computers than originally thought. WannaCry ransomware was believed to spread vigorously due to the outdated Windows XP operating system. However, according to a recent study, 98% of WannaCry victims were actually running Windows 7, not Windows XP.
Although, according to ZDNet, Windows XP operating systems still ran into issues when the WannaCry campaign went live. Instead of being infected with ransomware, the infamous blue-screen-of-death (BSoD) appeared on XPs and resulted in a continuous reboot process. Clearly, this is undesirable; but, compared to a ransomware infection, it’s the better alternative.
Second Wave Coming Soon?
Some experts believe another wave of WannaCry will be executed soon. Another global attack may be on the horizon, but it will not be WannaCry, and it will likely be more advanced.
First, all current WannaCry variants are already on the blacklist — meaning all anti-virus solutions will block it. Therefore, it will need to be an alternative variant that has not yet been identified. This new variant will likely have a higher ransom demand than the first variant. Although WannaCry took the world by storm, it had a rather small payout, of just over $100,000 in the last three weeks. Also, the ransomware authors will likely target entities most susceptible to paying the ransom.
Some experts believe the new global attack may already be in the works. There is a theory that the next global cyber attack will come in two parts. First, the malware will be distributed as much as it possibly can. It will originally sit idle until it has spread worldwide. Then, when the time is right, the malicious infection will occur.
It’s no longer a question of if, but a question of when. And when it does happen, will you be ready?