Setopati Hacked : Becomes victim of Wanna Cry Ransomware in Nepal

Nepal’s no 1 online news portal Setopati got hacked today. As per the information shown in the website it became the victim of popular Wanna Cry ransomware. The hacker was demanding bitcoin worth $100 in order to get all the database back.

Setopati Ransomware Attack
Ransomware Setopati  (Source: ICERT Nepal)

Due to the hacking almost all the database, important files and other document of the site were down. The director of the Setopati blamed that the site was hacked by member of the other online news portal of the Nepal. He said” In this era of the competition we were forward to provide the latest news to the people, then other News portal so they may have done illegal things to down the progress of the Setopati.”

Setopati Ransomware
Setopati Ransomware(Source: ICERT Nepal)


Now the Setopati has recovered all of the important data and files.

Now it doesn’t matters who hacked the site , but it matters how the site was hacked and how can we protect ourself from it. So let’s begin:

What is Wanna Cry Ransomware?

Wanna Cry is a ransomware virus that encrypts(or holds down) data of computers until the user meets the demands. It was first detected in March this year and is reported to be stolen from National Security Agency(NSA), United States. Till date, it has affected hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide.

This virus infects computers running on Microsoft operating systems and asks users to pay $300 worth Bitcoin-type of digital currency used worldwide. The required amount is doubled if ransom isn’t paid within time and after the failed action, all the data encrypted are destroyed.

Microsoft has discovered this earlier and released security update to patch the hole in it’s system. However, computers running on old versions of windows(not updated) are still most vulnerable.

Why Nepal is more vulnerable to these attacks?

Most of the government organizations in Nepal use pirated and outdated Operating Systems. Not only the government, general people and other organizations have been using outdated softwares. WannaCry infects the computer when someone clicks on the suspicious file sent over email. The consequence would be larger even when one government owned site will get victim of this attack. This will risk national data security and put identities of thousands of citizens in danger.

How can you be safe from this ransomware virus?

The virus was able to infect many systems because users didn’t install the latest security update, leaving computers vulnerable for any attack. Just one click on infected link or an infected email attachment will spread the virus to other computers in the network. To protect yourself from this virus best measures would be:

  • getting latest security updates.
  • use of latest anti-virus tools.
  • do not open suspicious links or email attachments.

Microsoft said earlier that it is currently working around the clock to help it’s customers who have been the vitcim of this attack. Hope they will find the solution soon!






Sushant Gautam

Mostly writes on growing tech trends, events, and future of technologies. He has a keen interest in tech entrepreneurial infrastructures and startup ecosystem of Nepal. He believes in using latest technologies in problem-solving and regularly patrols the progress in solving SDGs in developing countries. He is also a licenced amateur radio operator and ETC volunteer for disaster communication .

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