Published: Wed, June 28, 2017
Economy | By Annette Adams

India not much affected by global malware attack yet: Prasad

India not much affected by global malware attack yet: Prasad

A global cyber attack identified as Petya ransomware targeted India's largest container port, Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust, on Wednesday forcing it to shut operations in one of its three terminals, PTI reported. Latest reports said Russia, Ukraine and other parts in Europe are worst hit while Mumbai's Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) too was reported to be struggling.

By a statement, Danish shipping AP Moller-Maersk, which operates a JNPT section, said the malware caused flaws in its computer system last night.

Australia's Cyber Security Minister, Dan Tehan, told reporters on Wednesday that officials have yet to confirm that the Australian companies were hit by the same strain of ransomware that has struck hospitals, government offices and corporations across the world.

About 2,000 users had been attacked as of midday Tuesday in North America, according to Kaspersky Lab analysts, with organisations in Russian Federation and the Ukraine the most affected. Although operations are being conducted manually, very little work can actually be done manually, a senior official said.

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".

It said, "We are responding to the situation to contain and limit the impact and uphold operations".

The Copenhagen-based group says its APM Terminals have been "impacted in a number of ports", adding vessels with Maersk Line were "maneuverable, able to communicate and crews are safe". "We will update when we have more information", the spokesperson said in a written statement issued globally.

"We are continuing to investigate and will take appropriate action to protect customers", a spokesman for the company said, adding that Microsoft antivirus software detects and removes it.

The IT team of AP Moller-Maersk together with the IT companies in the country are working to restore the sytems and resume cargo operations, it said.

"It [JPNT] has been informed by the private terminal operator that this disruption is a effect of a worldwide disruption being faced by them because of a cyberattack", said the statement.

The government is closely monitoring the situation, which said further steps will be initiated to deal with the traffic situation based on an assessment during the course of the next few days. Ministry of Shipping and JNPT are taking steps to ensure minimum disturbance to trade, transporters and more importantly local citizens.

It warned that the disruptions could lead to "bunching of in-bound and out-bound container cargo", and truck congestion around the port.

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