WannaCry ransomware seizes control of Gramya bank in Odisha

Operations in the branch of Utkal Gramya Bank at Titlagarh come to a grinding halt after the ransomware attack.

Published: 19th May 2017 06:04 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th May 2017 06:04 AM   |  A+A-

Image for representational purpose only.

By Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR/BALANGIR: Even as the Crime Branch of Odisha Police took over the investigation into the ransomware attack at Purushottampur Community Health Centre in Ganjam, the WannaCry virus hit the Utkal Gramya Bank at Titlagarh bringing its operations to a grinding halt on Thursday.

A complaint filed by the bank authorities stated that computers of the rural bank were found to be hacked which left the operation in the branch paralysed and no services could be delivered on the day.

All data in the computers were encrypted by the hacker who demanded payment of $300 in Internet currency Bitcoin. Later, the bank authorities lodged a complaint with the head office in Balangir.

A Mumbai-based company E-Edge is providing technical consultancy on IT to Utkal Gramya Bank at Balangir where the headquarters of the bank is located. After the ransomware attack was reported, officials of Gramya Bank’s IT wing rushed to Titlagarh along with other senior officers to sort out the issue.

Branch Manager Purusottam Ghadei said the staff had found that two computers at the branch had become dysfunctional since Saturday. When the matter was reported to the IT wing of the bank, the latter advised not to use the affected systems.

While it was business as usual on Monday and Tuesday, rest of the systems developed the same problem on Wednesday as the ransomware attack multiplied. The home screen of the computers showed that the systems were hacked and a ransom of $300 in bitcoins was demanded.

Meanwhile, the Crime Branch took over probe of the Purushottampur attack basing on the FIR lodged under Sections 65 and 66 of Information Technology Act on the day.

The first attack was reported at City Hospital in Berhampur on Monday following which the Government swung into action. It has also augmented security of the State Data Centre as well as the Secretariat Data Centre.

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