Cyber attack victims failed to update software, says Microsoft

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Microsoft Corporation has blamed the National Security Agency (NSA) for the recent ransomware cyber attack that has affected over 200,000 computers in 150 countries.

The computer giant blamed NSA for storing data on software vulnerabilities which it discovered and such data was accessed by hackers.

According to Microsoft, NSA (a military intelligence organization and a constituent of the United States Department of Defense (DOD) had no need to store such vulnerabilities in a way that it could be accessed.

A statement from Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith on Sunday criticised the way governments store up information about security flaws in computer systems.

“We have seen vulnerabilities stored by the CIA show up on WikiLeaks, and now this vulnerability stolen from the NSA has affected customers around the world,” he wrote.

However the corporation also blamed users of its Windows Operating System for failing to update their security software which was released since March.

Mr Smith said that Microsoft had released a Windows security update that would have stopped the attack but many users were yet to run the update.

“As cybercriminals become more sophisticated, there is simply no way for customers to protect themselves against threats unless they update their systems,” Mr Smith said.

While urging users to pay more attention to their security update, he urged government to store such security information better to avoid situations where weapons systems could be hacked.

“An equivalent scenario with conventional weapons would be the US military having some of its Tomahawk missiles stolen.”

He added: “The governments of the world should treat this attack as a wake-up call.”

Meanwhile, there are fears that more ransomware attack would be discovered on Monday as people resume work after the weekend.

Reports indicate that payments of over $38,000 dollars have been made to the hackers as the ransomware threatened to double prices after three days and to delete files after seven days.

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