Major Hacker Attack Hits 150 Countries

The Background 

On Friday, a coordinated cyber attack hit more than 150 countries, causing pandemonium worldwide. Britain’s public health system was forced to shut down after hackers locked medical staff out of their hospital systems, while Russia revealed that the same group had targeted their Interior Ministry, which oversees their police forces. It’s believed that the hackers used stolen NSA software to execute the attack in the hopes of holding critical information hostage for a ransom. Officials believe the attack was executed by “many sources in many places,” making it a lot more complex than cyber experts previously thought. There’s fear that there will be more attacks across the U.S. today as new versions of the stolen software spread across the internet. New York Times

Why You Should Care

There are two parts to this story that are freak out worthy: 1) Analysts believe that the stolen NSA software came from an insider, which means there’s a leak at the home of America’s deepest, darkest secrets; 2) There’s a hacker group (operating worldwide) that’s targeting government agencies and doing serious damage. This time, they hit Britain’s hospitals, Russia’s police force, and Germany’s federal railway system (among others) but there’s nothing to say Canada’s public services won’t be next.

The Gist

More than 150 countries were hit by hackers using stolen NSA software on Friday, and IT experts believe the attacks could continue this week.