White House: Cyberattack has not affected US government

A screenshot of the warning screen from a purported ransomware attack as captured by a computer user in Taiwan is seen on laptop in Beijing Saturday

President Donald Trump's homeland security adviser says that so far, no US federal systems have been affected by the global cyberattack.

"As of this morning..."

Bossert stated that the USA infection rate has been lower than in other parts of the world, but could see additional incidents as malware attacks morph.

"This is a global attack", he said.

"If you are going to be infected by ransomware, it will happen when you get an email or some other form of message that's asking you to download and run it, and when that file runs, then usually, the attacker will encrypt your hard drive, or encrypt part of your hard drive so that your computer is still operable and you can continue to use it, but you can't access all your files".

Jason Tanz, the site director at Wired, echoed Larson's sentiments, telling ABC News, "individuals are particularly easy to prey on because majority are not being extremely up-to-date with their software".

Saturday morning at 9 a.m., after it had become clear the world was dealing with a unique digital ambush of unprecedented scale, Bossert also chaired a meeting of the NSC principals committee, which is composed of the senior-most administration officials, including Cabinet secretaries.

Some victims were ignoring official advice and paying the $300 ransom demanded by the cybercriminals to unlock their computers, which was due to double to $600 on Monday for computers hit by Friday's first wave. "Collective action aboard and with the United States to address this type of attack".

Bossert said he expects more people will be affected when they log into their work computers today.

Spokesman Jan Op Gen Oorth said Sunday that the number of individuals who have fallen victim to the cyberextortion attack could be much higher.

Over the weekend, Microsoft President Brad Smith blamed a hacking tool stolen from the National Security Agency, and Bossert said he is "absolutely right that this is an urgent call for collective action". However, officials and security firms said the spread was starting to slow. Cybersecurity experts say the unknown hackers who launched this weekend's "ransomware" attacks used a vulnerability that was exposed in NSA documents leaked online. He said a few USA businesses, including Fed Ex, were affected. The attacks forced several hospitals in England to stop admitting new patients with serious medical conditions and drove other companies to shut down their networks, leaving valuable data unavailable.

At least one hospital was affected, according to police. Its movie ticket systems were unaffected.

"That's what makes this more troubling than ransomware was a week ago", Thakur said.

He poured fuel on a long-running debate over how government intelligence services should balance their desire to keep software flaws secret - in order to conduct espionage and cyberwarfare - against sharing those flaws with technology companies to better secure the internet.

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