WannaCry ransomware attack: Ignore rumours, your ATM is safe for now

80% of Indian ATMs operate on Windows XP and uses a firmware that limits the machine’s activities to basics such as dispensing cash and checking the balance. Other activities are blacklisted, which prevent a ransomware from attacking an ATM.jpg

80% of Indian ATMs operate on Windows XP and uses a firmware that limits the machine’s activities to basics such as dispensing cash and checking the balance. Other activities are blacklisted, which prevent a ransomware from attacking an ATM.

Bank ATMs across India might escape the WannaCry worm global attack that locks computers and demands a ransom, cyber security experts said on Monday.

At least 80% of Indian ATMs operate on Windows XP and uses a firmware that limits the machine’s activities to bare basics such as dispensing cash on request and checking the account balance.

Other activities are blacklisted, preventing a ransomware from attacking an ATM.

Speculation swirled in India over the safety of ATMs after WannaCry crippled more than 200,000 computer systems across 150 countries since Friday.

India’s cyber security agency alerted Internet users against the worm that locks down files of an infected computer and asks the user to pay a ransom of $300 in Bitcoin virtual currency to unlock the system.

The worm takes advantage of a Windows vulnerability that Microsoft released a security patch for in March and computers that hadn’t updated were still at risk.

WannaCry has struck banks, hospitals, government agencies across the globe.

Experts cautioned that this is high time for banks to update the software used in ATMs.

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