The head of the European Union police agency said that the cyber assault has so far hit 200,000 victims in at least 150 countries. and that number would grow when people return to work on Monday.
Zimbabwe is one of the countries targeted by the massive cyber-attack called WannaCry ransomware which has hit computers in 104 countries including the Russian Federation, the UK, Ukraine and China. In China, universities and other educational institutions were hardest hit because they have older computers and are slow to update their operating systems and security.
The organization predicts that the problem could be "at a significant scale" because some infected machines haven't yet been detected, and existing infections can spread within networks. That prompted the company to issue another patch on Friday for older and unsupported operating systems such as Windows XP, allowing users to secure their systems without requiring an upgrade to the latest operating software. As cyberattacks such as this continue to occur, companies will likely double down in their efforts to remain vigilant to new and more complicated threats.
Smith also stated that Microsoft had already released a security patch for the said vulnerability but users didn't update it for some reason or the other and now the tech giant is "working around the clock" to protect and help its affected customers.
It was unclear Sunday whether Microsoft was delivering the new Windows XP, Windows 8 and Windows Server 2003 patches via the standard Windows Update maintenance service, or if users were required to manually download the appropriate fixes from the Update Catalog. It appears to exploit a vulnerability in Windows that, according to the Toronto Star, "was supposedly identified by the U.S".
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The latest virus exploits a flaw in Microsoft Windows first identified by U.S. intelligence. The hackers then demand $300 in order to release control of the files. But computers and networks that didn't update their systems were still at risk.
In Zimbabwe, many Windows computers stay unpatched.
Experts suspect that the next wave of attacks will be subjected to the banking sector.
While most have been repaired, some 152 computers are still affected by the malware, the company said.
Ensure all outgoing and incoming emails are scanned for malicious attachments.