Visit
for coverage from TIME, Health, Fortune and more
Go »

Tuesday’s Massive Cyber Attacks Hit U.S. Drug Giant Merck

Jun 27, 2017

A wave of cyber attacks hit the globe on Tuesday, ensnaring computer systems ranging from shipping giant A.P. Moller-Maersk to various institutions in Russia, Ukraine, and Europe. And U.S. drug giant Merck may be one of the victims.

It's still unclear where the ransomware attacks, which hold files hostage if companies or governments refuse to pay recompense (in this case $300 in Bitcoin for a decryption key), are originating. Early reports suggest it's a form of the malware dubbed "Petya" but there's a possibility it could be something else. Regardless, cybersecurity experts fear the digital scourge could grow between connected IT infrastructure systems over the following days.

Click here to subscribe to Brainstorm Health Daily, our brand new newsletter about health innovations.

Whatever the source, Merck tweeted on Tuesday that its global computer systems have been affected in a cyber attack.

A Merck spokesperson told Fortune that the company is still conducting its own investigation into the breach and doesn't have any details beyond what's expressed in the tweets at this time. The spokesperson also could not confirm that Merck engineers had definitively linked the compromise to Petya.

Cyber crimes, and ransomware in particular, have been on the rise in recent years. Health care organizations have been a particularly popular target given the wealth of personal and financial information that they carry. Merck says that it will release more details of its investigation once the drug maker learns exactly what happened.

All products and services featured are based solely on editorial selection. FORTUNE may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website.

Quotes delayed at least 15 minutes. Market data provided by Interactive Data. ETF and Mutual Fund data provided by Morningstar, Inc. Dow Jones Terms & Conditions: http://www.djindexes.com/mdsidx/html/tandc/indexestandcs.html. S&P Index data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Terms & Conditions. Powered and implemented by Interactive Data Managed Solutions