TECHNOLOGY

Global wave of cyber attacks hit India’s largest port

Cargo containers are seen stacked outside the container terminal of Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust in Mumbai, India. (Reuters)

A wave of cyberattacks wreaking havoc across computer systems worldwide disrupted operations at India’s largest container port, the government said onWednesday.

India’s shipping ministry said a private terminal run by Danish sea transport giant A.P. Moller-Maersk at the Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) in Mumbai had been affected.

Maersk earlier tweeted that the attack had impacted “multiple sites and business units”, without confirming which ones.

“It (JPNT) has been informed by the private terminal operator that this disruption is a consequence of a worldwide disruption being faced by them because of a cyberattack,” said the statement.

“While the terminal operator is taking steps to address the issues disrupting the operations, it is anticipated that there could be bunching of in-bound and out-bound container cargo,” it added.

Russia, Ukraine hit first 

The series of cyberattacks began in Russia and Ukraine on Tuesday, hitting government and corporate computer systems across the world as the virus spread to western Europe and across the Atlantic. 

A screen of an idle virus affected cash machine in a state-run OshchadBank says “Sorry for inconvenience/Under repair” in Kiev, Ukraine, on June 28, 2017. (AP)

Several multinational companies said they were targeted, including US pharmaceutical giant Merck, Russian state oil giant Rosneft, British advertising giant WPP and the French industrial group Saint-Gobain.

The first reports of trouble came from Ukrainian banks, Kiev’s main airport and Rosneft, in a major incident reminiscent of the recent WannaCry virus.

Some IT experts identified the virus as “Petrwrap”, a modified version of the Petya ransomware which hit last year and demanded money from victims in exchange for the return of their data.

However, global cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab said they thought it was not a variant of Petya ransomware “but a new ransomware that has not been seen before”.

India’s shipping ministry said it was “alive to the situation and are taking steps to ensure minimum disturbance to trade, transporters and more importantly local citizens”.

The cyberattacks recalled the WannaCry ransomware outbreak last month which hit more than 150 countries and a total of more than 200,000 victims.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 28 June 2017 KSA 17:14 - GMT 14:14
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