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Petya ransomware attack

What do you need to know?

On 27th June, a ransomware attack known as Petya successfully hacked a number of international companies, government organisations and private businesses. Sentis Managed Solutions would like to assure all our managed antivirus clients that they have not been affected by this attack.

Unlike other ransomware, Petya doesn’t encrypt and prevent access to individual files, opting instead to encrypt the entire hard disk drive of the affected machine. It then reboots, preventing the user from accessing any information, and then forcefully crashes the computer to hold its contents for ransom.

This is the second major global ransomware attack in the last two months, following on from May’s WannaCry ransomware attack which affected more than 200,000 computers in over 150 countries, including the NHS, O2 owner TelefГіnica and German state railways.

Unlike WannaCry, Petya tries to distribute its ransomware internally within the networks it infiltrates, unlike spreading across different networks. However, it’s important that users remain vigilant against ransomware and cyberattacks in general by:

  • Not opening files, attachments and emails from people they do not know, trust or are suspicious of. Education is key, as ransomware relies on recipients opening these files
  • Keep antivirus and anti-spam software up-to-date – they provide a good level of security against cyberattacks and should always be updated. If you’re one of our managed antivirus clients, we do this for you.
  • Review your IT usage policies and company handbooks, discouraging staff from accessing personal email accounts on company equipment.

If you’re interested in finding out more about how ransomware attacks work, or would like to discuss additional safeguarding measures, please call us on 0800 652 0804.