Image Courtesy of Alex Milan Tracy/SIPA USA/PA Images
Two researchers have put a stop to a worldwide malware virus that started in the United Kingdom’s health service (NHS) yesterday (May 12th) and quickly spread around the world. US package carrier Fed Ex was also affected my the virus.
A 22-year-old UK cyber-security researcher known online as MalwareTech, together with researcher Darien Huss from security firm Proofpoint, terminated the virus at its source.
According to ITN/ITV News: The researchers spotted a long domain name made up of a series of apparently random letters in the malware code and purchased the site, not realizing at the time that the move would stop the virus. MalwareTech said on his Twitter account “I will confess that I was unaware registering the domain would stop the malware until after I registered it, so initially it was accidental.” and also told The Daily Beast “I saw it [the site] wasn’t registered and thought, ‘I think I’ll have that,'” MalwareTech.
The virus, known as WannaCrypt or variations of that name and which utilizes a tool developed by the NSA, appears to search the internet for a web address which stops the worm’s transmission once activated.When the site registration was detected by the virus it stopped its worldwide spread. Connections to the domain have now been “sinkholed” to a server in California.
Sources: ITV/ITN News; The Daily Beast
© Miller News Service