Ukraine central bank says cyberattack hits lenders

Many organizations in Europe and the U.S. have been crippled by a ransomware attack dubbed “Petya”.The virus is known to be much more intrusive than other ransomware strains, as it reboots systems and prevents computers from working.A large and coordinated malware attack hit key parts of Ukraine’s infrastructure Tuesday, taking a toll on government agencies, electric grids, stores, and banks.The hack’s scale and the use of ransomware quickly recalled the massive May cyber attack in which hackers likely linked to North Korea disabled computers in dozens of nations, including Ukraine, using a flaw that was once incorporated by the National Security Agency’s surveillance tool kit.Department of Homeland Security spokesman Scott McConnell refused to explain if USA firms or infrastructure have been affected by the cyber attacks, but he said that the government is in communication with its global partners and is ready to provide help to anyone who requests it, Efe news reported. “We are now asserting the situation”, the company said.However, the radiation monitoring system at Ukraine’s Chernobyl nuclear site has been taken offline after it was targeted in the attack, forcing employees to use hand-held counters to measure levels, officials said.Banks were experiencing “difficulty in servicing customers and performing banking operations” due to the attacks, it said.”We also have a network “down”,” Rozenko said on Facebook.”We are talking about a cyberattack”, said Anders Rosendahl, a spokesman for the Copenhagen-based shipping group.The new ransomware attack seemingly began in Eastern Europe, with Ukraine being hit particularly hard.Rosneft, one of the world’s biggest producers of crude oil by volume, said its oil production had not been affected.Microsoftfurther advised users to exercise caution when opening files in emails from unknown sources, since malware is often spread through email attachments.”This morning the National Bank of Ukraine has warned banks and other financial market participants about an external hacker attack on the websites of some Ukrainian banks, as well as commercial and public enterprises”, the statement read.For advice from the Department of Homeland Security on how to avoid ransomware attacks, go here. Kiev is blaming Moscow, but Russian Federation has also been hit with the country’s oil giant Rosneft among those falling victim. The highest rate of infection appears to be in Ukraine, where multiple government systems have been locked down.The government’s computer network went down as well, and Groysman posted a picture on Twitter of a computer screen with an error message.