Tagged With ukraine

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Janus Cybercrime Solutions, the author of Petya -- the ransomware initially attributed with Wednesday's global cyberattacks -- resurfaced on Twitter early Thursday, seemingly offering to help those whose files can no longer be recovered.

The altruistic gesture, even if it does prove fruitless, is uncharacteristic of the criminal syndicate that launched an underworld enterprise by placing powerful exploits in the hands of others to deploy as they saw fit. It may also simply indicate that Janus would prefer not to be tagged with the spread of "NotPetya" -- so named by Kaspersky Lab, which has itself sought to differentiate between Janus' ransomware and that which worked havoc across Europe this week.

There's consensus now among malware experts that NotPetya is actually a wiper -- malware designed to inflict permanent damage -- not ransomware like Petya, which gave its victims' the option of recovering their data for a price.

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The '90s cyberpunk thriller Hackers is used too often to illustrate the fearful future of cyber security, but it's popular for a reason. The film's seemingly fictional scenarios keep coming true. Take this week's global ransomware attack, for instance. It's a plot twist that would make Matthew Lillard leer at the camera and cackle.

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Another major cyberattack attack is quickly spreading across Europe and has now infected systems in the US as well. Researchers at Symantec and other leading security firms are confirming that ransomware is being spread via EternalBlue, an exploit leaked in April by the ShadowBrokers hacking group, which is said to have been stolen from the US National Security Agency.

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The seemingly local cyberattack that cut power to part of Ukraine's capital, Kiev, last December could have been a test run. And security researchers now say the malware believed to have caused the blackout is actually modular, mostly automated and highly adaptable. That means it doesn't just work on electrical grids in Ukraine. This dangerous cyberweapon might work in Sydney or Paris or New York -- anywhere really.

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The atomic fallout in Chernobyl, Ukraine was one of the worst nuclear disasters in history and put around 2600 square kilometres of land out of commission. It's been good for bad horror films and for the wildlife that has blossomed there following the disaster, but after decades of people unable to return to their homes and the property surrounding the reactor abandoned, it was only a matter of time before somebody wanted to attempt to reuse it.

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David L. Stern is a freelance writer based in Kiev, Ukraine. He's also, if you believe several Russian media outlets, a covert CIA agent who helped orchestrate a conspiracy to shoot down an aeroplane and blame Russia. What a busy fellow!

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On Friday, 16 January, The New York Times published a report detailing Ukrainian rebels' conflict to seize the Donetsk airport, now a bombed-out shell of its former self. Although the Ukrainian Army says it's rebuffed the attack, it would have been the rebels' first major advance in months since the cease fire on Sept. 5.

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A preliminary report by the Dutch Safety Board into what caused the devastating crash of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 has confirmed what many already feared. The report explains that the plane was downed by "a large number of high-energy objects that penetrated the aircraft from outside", causing it to explode in mid-air. All 298 passengers and crew aboard the flight were tragically killed.