With the “WannaCrypt” ransomware attack breaching the security of several governmental agencies, the Department of Defense (DoD) has clarified its intention to upgrade to Microsoft Windows 10 by the end of the year.

The acting chief information officer at DoD, John Zangardi, has explained the Department’s plans at the Adobe Digital Government Symposium 2017. Mr. Zangardi  said that “[t]he objective is to be done and in our networks by the end of this calendar year.

In addition, Mr. Zangardi noted that his cybersecurity priorities at DoD include:

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  • Efforts to maximize capability and lethality
  • Reduce the cyber attack surface
  • Understand the department’s information technology infrastructure
  • Build up efficiency and effectiveness

However, Microsoft had already patched the exploit used in the attack on Windows 10 some time ago, which means that only outdated systems were affected.

The “WannaCrypt” attacks and Microsoft

Last week, the morning of Friday, 12th of May, a massive ransomware attack called “WannaCrypt” or “WannaCry” attacked more than 230.000 computers worldwide.

As a result, many computers which remained unpatched were breached, including devices at governmental agencies. Parts of Britain’s National Health Service were hacked, as well as several renown companies.

Microsoft President and chief legal officer, Brad Smith, has criticized the U.S. government and its agencies. Additionally, Mr. Smith has reiterated the need for a “Digital Geneva Convention”.

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