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Kaspersky Concerned Over Increased Attacks on Global Financial Infrastructure

© Sputnik / Vladimir Fedorenko / Go to the photo bankLogo of the Kaspersky Lab antivirus software developer.
Logo of the Kaspersky Lab antivirus software developer. - Sputnik International
The Kaspersky Lab cybersecurity company is concerned over a growing number of malware attacks against world industrial infrastructure, the company said in a statement Wednesday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The recent attacks of WannaCry and ExPetr ransomware that affected thousands of commercial computers and programs, and government agencies all around the world, justify the company’s concerns.

"What causes the most concern over the increasing number of attacks of encryption viruses is that they are ever more aimed at the financial and industrial infrastructure. The reasons behind such tendency are clear: the criminals consider malware attacks against organizations more profitable than mass attacks at ordinary users. In such case, the plotters get not only the company’s money but also valuable information that could be used for blackmail or sabotage," Anton Ivanov, the anti-virus expert with the Kaspersky Lab, said, as quoted in the statement.

Kaspersky Lab employees at work in their office, Moscow - Sputnik International
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According to the statement, the number of victims of encryption viruses increased from some 720,000 in 2015-2016 to over 1.150 million in 2016-2017, with the number of the victims of all ransom malware increased by 1.4 percent from 2.316 million to 2.581 million.

In May, WannaCry ransomware hit over 200,000 computers in some 150 countries, including the UK public health system NHS, the German state rail company Deutsche Bahn, the Russian Interior Ministry and major multinational banks.

In June, a large-scale hacking attack targeted companies across the world, mainly effecting organizations in Ukraine. The attackers used ransomware that was initially recognized as Petya, but was later identified as a new type of malware named ExPetr. Some experts said the virus was a wiper rather than ransomware proper.

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