Spain under cyberattack too


THE GOVERNMENT says several Spanish companies have been targeted in ransomware cyberattacks.

This announcement came on the same day the NHS in the UK suffered their own computer issues from a suspected attack.

The Industry Ministry said on Friday that the attack affected the Windows operating system of employees’ computers, blocking files and demanding a ransom to free up the system.

It said the attacks had not affected the companies’ services or data protection of their clients.

Microsoft issued a security update on March 14 about vulnerabilities in the Windows system.

“News (of this attack) has been exaggerated and our colleagues are working on it right now,” Telefonica Chief Data Officer Chema Alonso, a well-known cyber security expert, said on Twitter.

Iberdrola (IBE.MC) and Gas Natural (GAS.MC), along with Vodafone’s unit in Spain (VOD.L), asked staff to turn off computers or cut off internet access in case they had been compromised, representatives from the firms said.

There were no details on which companies were targeted but telecommunications company Telefonica said it had detected a cyber security incident that had affected computers of some employees. It said it had activated the necessary measures but gave no further details.

Spain’s intelligence agency recommended companies should carry out Windows updates.