Number of countries hit by massive cyber attack doubles

EU law enforcement agency says 150 countries hit by massive cyber attack over the weekend, with about 200,000 individual victims.

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Gary Willig,

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The European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol), the European Union's main la enforcement agency, released updated statistics on the recent massive cyber attack which affected dozens of countries around the world over the weekend.

According to data published by Europol executive director Rob Wainwright, the attack affected about 200 thousand victims in approximately 150 countries. The updated figures nearly double the number of countries affected by the cyber attack, which was initially reported to be 74.

The cyber attack affected Britain's health-care system. Hospitals and doctors' surgeries in parts of England were forced to turn away patients and cancel appointments after they were infected with the ransomware, which scrambled data on computers and demanded payments of $300 to $600 to restore access.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu opened the weekly cabinet meeting this morning by speaking about the cyber attack..

"We are in the middle of a global cyber attack," Netanyahu said. "Nearly 100 countries have been affected. Up until now, Israel's critical infrastructure was not affected, and we suffered only minor harm in other areas."

"However, that is true until this moment, and things may change any minute.

"A few years ago, we created a defense system, to defend against cyber attacks, and we founded the Cyber-Defense Authority. We saw what would be in the future, and we understood that we are facing a new threat.

"I ask only one thing of Israel's civilians and enterprises: Please listen to the Cyber-Defense Authority's instructions.

"There will be many more developments, and we will need to invest additional resources in order to secure the State of Israel - both on its security front and its civilian front. We will ensure Israel has the necessary protections against this new type of attack."