Hi-Tech

WannaCry ransomware decryption tools released for free

WannaCry ransomware decryption tools released for free

Of course, given that Windows 7 is the most popular operating system by some margin (the latest figures from NetMarketShare give the aging OS 48.50 percent of the market, while XP has just 7.04 percent) it's no surprise that it was responsible for the vast majority of infections, but even so 98 percent is staggering.

The second and third most targeted OS versions were Windows Server 2008 R2, and Windows 10, respectively.

Guinet also said the software may not work on machines running on Windows 10 as the prime numbers are deleted there.

Microsoft released Windows 7 in 2009, the likes of which is now installed on less than half the world's Windows PCs, according to Reuters.




While PCMag has not tested Wanakiwi because we don't have any computers infected with WannaCry, Europol announced in a tweet on Thursday that its cybercrime law enforcement division tested it and found that the tool could "recover data in some circumstances".

The statistics come to disprove popular belief that WannaCry hit mostly Windows XP machines.

Researchers have found out that WannaCry, a ransomware that wreaked havoc just recently, infected nearly only computers running Windows 7, at least judging from early figures. Microsoft first released a patch for the vulnerability back in March, but many people clearly didn't update.

WannaCry was distributed via email by a hacker group called Shadow Brokers. Microsoft had pushed out a public patch for Windows 7 long before the attack occurred, but the patch for Windows XP was only released as an emergency measure, with the damage already inflicted. The program scours a computer's memory for prime numbers, the foundation of encryption, and then uses those to generate unlock keys for the encrypted files. Benjamin Delpy, an employee of the Banque de France, used Guinet's methods to create a free decryption tool he dubbed "wanakiwi".


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