Taiwan among world's top targets in massive ransomware attack | Taiwan News

I know one Taiwan company that already paid the ransom last summer 2016. They basically had no choice. Pay or lose all historical and current data.

Probably cos they are using pirate copies?
Or too cheap to upgrade to latest versions of windows?

Just not efficient enough to update the free security patches.

Probably cause they’re still using Windows XP.

Actually not generally true. Brother is in software data backup firm. Happens all the time. Says all you need is 1 PC to get infected and then it goes throughout the whole firm’s intranet. The key is that the company probably did NOT backup its system data on a daily basis, and as such that firm cannot be “down” for any significant time as the monetary losses from downtime far outweigh the ransom amount. Companies can always reformat and restart their system, but it’s because they don’t backup the data (which is the valuable stuff) on a daily or even hourly basis. Typically what happens is a firm pays the ransom and then immediately backs up/saves the data in full and does a wholesale clean reboot of the full system, after massive checking for bugs, malware, etc. They then have learned a very hard lesson.

Yes by why was Taiwan so badly affected, allegedly?

I can’t recall ever inserting my USB stick into a Taiwanese company’s computer without it being infected by a virus/malware/whatever.

Fortunately I use linux at home, so I just delete the .exe when I get home.

There’s a serious problem with how people think, or don’t think in this country.

Click this: http://ipeedalittle.com/click/

Ummmm, first of all, stop using USB sticks. That has been a standard guideline to avoid virus/malware/whatever for at least 5 years and more like 8 or 9 or 10. Just because it’s available doesn’t mean it’s suitable.

Reading in the NYT these people could pocket $1,000,000,000 off this. Not sure how true that is, but if so that is James Bond level

What would you suggest? I use computers in lots of different classrooms at work, and I prefer using a USB stick to typing any important passwords onto those computers. Plus it lets me use Portable Apps, which means I can have basic applications that are in English and consistent from classroom to classroom.

And when I get home and plug the USB stick into my iMac, the first thing I do is run a virus scan on it.

I’m not sure what the alternatives are. Given the lack of security I typically see on Taiwanese systems, I’d rather carry my files on a USB stick than log in to my accounts on a random computer. At least with the USB stick the damage is limited.

Interesting - Cory Doctorow in Boing Boing wrote about a far smaller figure:

The Wcry epidemic illustrates a bizarre fact of life in the 21st century: petty criminal nitwits are able to pull off heists on the scale that we used to association with nation-state-backed militias. In the case of Wcry, it’s not just the dumb mistake of hiding a killswitch in the code and assuming no one would find it – it’s also the petty nature of the ransom, a mere $300, which appears to have netted the criminal masterminds behind it a whopping $18,000 – to reactivate systems whose downtime was costing millions.

I guess he’s using this article as a source, but I haven’t read that.

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Now this is somewhat amusing. Hackers take pity on a Taiwanese man who claims he couldn’t afford the ransom.

If his monthly income is $400 USD, how can he afford a computer to begin with? Plus standard salary is about 22,000 ($700 USD or so). So I suspect the guy may be lying about his income.

Maybe they overestimated Taiwanese income based on the average income of the country. I’m sure there are plenty of Taiwanese bosses with bank accounts in the hundreds of millions of NT who can actually afford the ransoms.

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Maybe he works part-time? Between jobs?
Even for somebody making 20k or 30k/mth it’s really a lot of money so many will just format and reinstall instead I guess.

They took down our shared computer network and gave us all memory sticks that only work in our computers -and vice versa- for safety reasons. Gee, you are telling me they are wrong? Seriously? (Insert ironic icon)

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The same poor Taiwanese OLs that have Coach bags and trendy iPhone whwtever is the latest model. Secret? Credit card!

Ha, started on Linux precisely because XP was not going to be supported, and my perfectly functioning system was thus going to be binned by fiat.

Took me a while, but I think I found the right page.
Correct me if I am wrong.
Don’t cry, not yet!