"The decision to publicly attribute this incident underlines the fact that the United Kingdom and its allies will not tolerate malicious cyber activity", the Foreign and Commonwealth Office concluded.
It has been claimed that the ransom element of the malware was simply a cover for what was essentially a destructive malware attack created to encrypt the hard disc of infected machines with no way to unlock them.
They have suggested the attack may have been disguised as ransomware to make it appear to be criminal led when it may have been state sponsored.
The British government says that Russian Federation was behind a massive global cyberattack that hit major companies in June 2017.
Britain has publicly pointed the finger at Moscow for spreading the virus, which disrupted companies across Europe including UK-based Reckitt Benckiser. However, the firms however were collateral damage in the ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russian Federation. EternalBlue exploits a loophole in Microsoft Windows and was part of a slew of NSA cyberweapons posted online last April by the Kremlin-allied hacker group Shadow Brokers. "Canada condemns the use of the NotPetya malware to indiscriminately attack critical financial, energy, government, and infrastructure sectors around the world". Its MEDoc software is one of two accounting packages required for companies doing business in the Ukraine and is widely used by Ukraine agencies. Fortunately, the company managed to rebuilt 4.000 servers, 45.000 computers, and 2.500 applications. The company reported losses of $300m due to the incident.
The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) conducted the assessment, finding that the goal of the cyberattack was to disrupt Ukraine's financial systems. "Its non-discriminatory plan has prompted its further expansion by affecting other European and Russian enterprises ".
While the virus also affected some systems in Russian Federation, there were suspicions early on that Moscow was behind the attack, because Ukraine appeared to be the intended target. The attack "was part of the Kremlin's ongoing effort to destabilize Ukraine and demonstrates ever more clearly Russia's involvement in the ongoing conflict".
"It doesn't have to be that way".