Taiwan’s public, medical, financial bodies largely avoid cyber attack

Last week's global cyber-attack, which is estimated to have affected some 200,000 computers, has had only a light impact on Taiwan's government, medical or public institutions. That was the word on Monday from government spokesperson Hsu Kuo-yung.

The ransomware attack, called WannaCry hit on Friday, affecting computers in at least 150 countries. Reports say that hospitals, large companies and government institutions were among the hardest hit.

Although Taiwan has not seen widespread fallout from the ransomware attack, the government has taken preventative measures. The Cabinet has asked tech supervisors throughout the government to update computers with the latest operating software. They've also asked them to notify them of the internet addresses of servers originating the attack, so that the Government Service Network can block them.

The malware infects computers and networks through vulnerabilities in Microsoft systems, particularly those with outdated software. It then holds information hostage, demanding a ransom to unlock it.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Sheu Yu-jer said that the public can rest assured in the approach to Taiwan's looming May 31st tax deadline, that the ministry's computers are up-to-date and protected.

Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower) also says that while there was a breach of security at one of its branch stations in Kaohsiung, southern Taiwan, the malware affected only administrative computers. Officials say that the computers which regulate the supply of electricity are part of a closed network, and therefore not vulnerable to external cyber-attacks.

Source: Radio Taiwan International