Beijing, China (NBC News) – Russian President Vladimir Putin said Monday the main source of the cyberattacks that hit organizations around the world over the weekend lay with the U.S. intelligence services.
Speaking to reporters at a news conference in China, Putin said that “Microsoft leadership has put it straight” in stating that U.S. intelligence services had created the means for the attack.
He also said that Russia was not involved in the attack.
His comments came after the president of Microsoft Brad Smith blamed U.S. intelligence agencies, including the CIA and NSA, for “stockpiling” software code that can be used by hackers.
Cybersecurity experts say the unknown hackers who launched the attacks used a vulnerability that was exposed in NSA documents leaked online.
Many of the 200,000 victims in more than 150 countries were still struggling to recover from the first attack of the so-called “Wannacry” virus Monday.
Thousands more infections have been reported, largely in Asia, which had been closed for business when the malware first struck last Friday.
The cases were more contained, however, than the systemic outbreak that last week paralyzed computers running factories, banks, government agencies and transport systems around the world.