Virus costs 'billions of dollars' in losses

More than 14,000 computers in China were infected with ransomware every day on average, making it the most dangerous and serious virus attack with losses of billions of dollars.

More than 14,000 computers in China were infected with ransomware every day on average, making it the most dangerous and serious virus attack with loss of “billions of dollars,” 360, China’s biggest cyber security firm, said on Tuesday in a report.

In the first 11 months last year, over 4.72 million computers in China were infected by ransomware, including outbreaks of WannaCry in May and Arena in October and November.

Ransomware are computer virus that locks victims out of their computers and they have to pay hackers to reinstate access.

Only about 11 percent of victims were able to fully recover their files after their computers were infected by ransomware — 5.8 percent recovered data after paying a “ransom” and another 5.4 percent have backup files or data, 360 said.

Globally, ransomwares have created huge losses. WannaCry caused more than US$1 billion loss within the first four days since it broke out in May. 

The total loss from ransomware is expected to hit US$11.5 billion in 2019, said research firms without providing 2018 forecasts.

Ransomwares attack computers in government, education, hospital, energy, and telecommunications sectors, according to experts.

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