Boeing admits computers falling victim to ransomeware on small scale

Updated 2018-03-29 14:10:05 Xinhua

Leading U.S. aerospace manufacturer Boeing Company admitted some of its computers were hit by notorious WannaCry computer virus, which caused a global panic last year, local media reported Wednesday.

The Seattle Times daily in the Washington state said that an engineer at Boeing Commercial Airplane sent out an alarming alert about the virus Tuesday, which he warned could bring down vital airplane production equipment in the company.

The virus could hit equipment used in functional tests of airplanes ready to roll out, and potentially "spread to airplane software," Mike VanderWel, chief engineer at Boeing Commercial wrote in his memo.

However, Boeing executives offered assurances Wednesday that the virus attack has been neutralized with only minimal damage.

"The vulnerability was limited to a few machines. We deployed software patches. There was no interruption to the 777 jet program or any of our programs," said Linda Mills, head of communications for Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

The crisis is over and the attack has done no significant damage, she said, noting that the attack was limited to computers in the Commercial Airplanes division, and that the military and services units were not affected.

The WannaCry virus is a malicious ransomeware that exploits a flaw in Windows software to gain access to a network and was designed to lock users out of their data by encrypting files until they make payment in cryptocurrency, or other types of ransom.

The virus affected hospitals, banks and government institutions in several countries in 2017, triggering fears and panic across the world.

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