Boeing Pwned By WannaCry Ransomware

Jet maker Boeing has been hit by the WannaCry ransomware according to The Seattle Times. This is the same ransomware that pwned the NHS in UK among other places on Earth last May:

Boeing was hit Wednesday by the WannaCry computer virus, raising fears within the company that it could cripple some vital airplane production equipment. Mike VanderWel, chief engineer at Boeing Commercial Airplane production engineering, sent out an alarming memo calling for “All hands on deck.” “It is metastasizing rapidly out of North Charleston and I just heard 777 (automated spar assembly tools) may have gone down,” VanderWel wrote, adding that he’s concerned the virus will hit equipment used in functional tests of airplanes ready to roll out and potentially “spread to airplane software.” Indicating widespread alarm within the company at the potential impact, VanderWel said the attack required “a battery-like response,” a reference to the 787 in-flight battery fires in 2013 that grounded the world’s fleet of Dreamliners and led to an extraordinary three-month-long engineering effort to find a fix.

My first thought upon reading this is if their infrastructure is fully patched as having up to date patching is how this ransomware spreads. If they didn’t up their patching game given the events of a year ago, then that’s a serious problem. My other thought is if this is a new variant of this ransomware. It isn’t clear from the story but if that’s the case, then that’s a huge problem. Either way, Boeing doesn’t look good at the moment because of this and I would hate to be the guy who runs IT over there.


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