Many researchers say the incidents appear to be linked, but say it may not be a coordinated attack on specific targets. It is believed to the biggest attack of its kind ever recorded.Russian Federation appeared to be the hardest hit nation, with its interior and emergencies ministries and biggest bank, Sberbank, saying they were targeted.The interior ministry said on its website that around 1,000 computers had been infected but it had localized the virus.Spain, Ukraine, and India were also severely affected, according to researchers from the Kaspersky Lab.By Kaspersky Lab’s count, the malware struck at least 74 countries. “This is not targeted at the NHS”. CNN has not independently confirmed that number.

With almost 45 NHS organisations from London to Scotland hit in the ransomware attack on Friday, patients of the state-funded countrywide service are facing days of chaos as appointments and surgeries have been canceled. “Following this a lot of our clinical systems and patient systems were reported to have gone down”.

James Scott, from the Washington DC-based Institute of Critical Infrastructure Technology, said ransomware emerged “as an epidemic” in 2016.

The UK’s National Health Service (NHS) has been hit and screenshots of the WannaCry program were shared by NHS staff.

The BBC reported some 40 NHS organisations and GP surgeries have been hit by the hack.

“We’re not aware of any evidence that patient data has been compromised”.

Among the many other institutions that were affected were hospitals and telecommunications companies across Europe, Russia, Asia and beyond, according to MalwareHunterTeam, a security firm that tracks ransomware attacks.

In Spain, the attacks did not disrupt the provision of services or networks operations of the victims, the government said in a statement.

Spain’s Ministry of Energy, Tourism and Digital Agenda confirms the intrusion, describing it as “punctual attacks”. The interior ministry said on its website that about 1,000 computers had been infected but it had localized the virus.

He added, “It is a disgusting lesson about why using supported software, and keeping that software updated, is so important”.

Here’s a look at how malware and ransomware work and what people can do if they fall victim to attacks. It said the company was working with its customers to provide additional assistance.

Britain’s National Cyber Security Centre and its National Crime Agency were looking into the United Kingdom incidents, which disrupted care at National Health Service facilities.

The ransomware cyber attacks affecting companies and government organisations in at least seven countries began yesterday morning.

The problem also affected the switchboard at Newham University Hospital, Barts said.

The hack also exposed serious vulnerabilities at the NHS.

Hospitals across Britain found themselves without access to their computers or phone systems.

Patrick Ward, a 47-year-old sales director, said his heart operation, scheduled for Friday, was canceled at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital in London.

“If you’ve been infected, not only have your files been encrypted and you’re being held to ransom, but your machine is being used as a zombie to attempt to affect other machines on the internet”. They appear to have gone worldwide.

When CNNTech first reported the Microsoft vulnerabilities leaked in April, Hickey said they were the “most damaging” he’d seen in several years, and warned that businesses would be most at risk. The cyberattack, he said, could cause a major backlog in referrals. They asked patients not to come to the hospitals unless it was an emergency.