US drugmaker Merck also affected by cyberattack

Jun 29, 2017, 15:31
US drugmaker Merck also affected by cyberattack

The group is "assessing and managing" the situation to minimise the impact on its customers and partners.

P. Moller Maersk, which owns drilling firm Maersk Drilling and oil firm Maersk Oil, as well as a huge container shipping business, are among a slew of companies across the globe hit by the Petya ransomeware virus.

The cyber attack has also hit Russia's top oil producer Rosneft and a number of Ukrainian commercial banks, as well as state and private companies.

"What we understand is that the channels the hackers have chosen for ransom money has been shut down by governments, so that is contained now", he said.

It is understood the company has taken its email system down as a preventative measure.

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"It will have an impact on vessels or cargo that loaded yesterday, today and maybe also tomorrow", he said.

In Ukraine, the country that appeared most affected by Tuesday's attack, the government said it had halted the spread of the virus and that key government and business systems were stable. Dutch broadcaster RTV Rijnmond reported that 17 shipping container terminals run by APM Terminals had been hacked, including two in Rotterdam and 15 in other parts of the world.

"There have been indications of late that Petya is in circulation again, exploiting the SMB (Server Message Block) vulnerability", the Swiss Reporting and Analysis Centre for Information Assurance (MELANI) said in an e-mail.

Overall operations have been minimally impacted, port officials. In particular, about serious problems reported by Reuters, the official representative of the British group WPP, the largest advertising Agency in the world.

The full scope of damage wouldn't be known until Thursday when everyone gets back to work, Zhora said.

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In Ukraine, victims included top-level government offices, where officials posted photos of darkened computer screens; energy companies; banks; and even cash machines, gas stations, and supermarkets.

The attacks appeared to slow down in part because the ransomware appears to spread only when a direct contact exists between two networks - such as when a global company's Ukraine office interacts with headquarters, said Ryan Kalember, a security expert at Proofpoint.

"We're aware of the global ransomware incident and are monitoring the situation closely", a spokesperson told The Independent, advising members of the public and businesses to check its website for guidance on keeping their systems secure.

"IT systems are down across multiple sites and select business units", the company said. Hackers are telling the victims to pay $300 in cryptocurrency per infected computer to unlock their systems.

Norway's national security agency said the ransomware was affecting an unnamed "international company" in the country.

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