Petya Cyber Attack

A massive cyber-attack in the form of ransomware has gripped Ukraine. Britain, Danish and Spanish firms were also crippled in the virus attack. All the firms, airports and government departments were affected, and later, the attack spread all over Europe. Metro networks, central banks, and state aircraft manufacturers were also paralyzed. A shipping firm in the Netherlands and advertising firm in the UK declared that their systems were too malfunctioning due to the attack. The virus came in the form of ransomware. This happened a week after the WannaCry hack that affected almost 150 countries.

The attack on 27th June 2017 was dealt on high priority as it questioned the safety of the nations affected. Maersk, a famous logistics company, shut down many of its operations after the attack. Rosneft, the most famous Russian oil company, suffered a setback too with severe damage to its servers.

Let us have a glance through the events that were unfolded immediately after the terrible attack:
3:06 pm- The British advertising firm, WPP confirmed that it was a victim of the attack.
3:08 pm- Rosneft, the Russian oil mascot said that it suffered terrible loss after the hack.
There was a tweet from the deputy prime minister of Ukraine confirming the virus attack.
3:11 pm- Maersk’s 17 container terminals were down because of the attack.
3:23 pm- Experts look at the consequences of the attack and ascertain that Petya ransomware is behind the attack.
3:27 pm- Several Spanish forms were also under attack.
3:43 pm- WPP employees were told to shut off their systems.
3:48 pm- The attack is multi-pronged, and US firms were also affected.
3:51 pm- Few Swiss and Indian companies were affected too.
3:57 pm- The attack was termed to be severe and impossible to stop.
4:00 pm- Chernobyl nuclear plant was also attacked.
4:12 pm- Many shipping terminals were shut down.
4:21 pm- Cases were reported in Lithuania too.
4:45 pm- It was declared that there is no kill switch for Petya.
4:56 pm- The attack spread to Israel.
6:49 pm- Almost 2000 companies were under attack.

Earthquake In Chile

In the west coast of Chile, near Santiago, a major earthquake occurred of magnitude 7.1. There was a fear of tsunami along the Pacific coast, but later, studies revealed that there is no tension of tsunami.
The epicenter of the quake:
· 85 miles from Santiago
· 22 miles from Valparaiso
· 6.2 miles below the sea
·
The quake lasted for a concise time but had great intensity. All the people ran hither and thither, and a rumor spread that all the people must run to the hills to escape from tsunami but later the officials termed the rumors as baseless. The Pacific warning center and Chilean navy said that the earthquake could not lead to dangerous seismic waves. The maximum height of the tsunami wave could be 15 cm.

There was no damage to the structures in Valparaiso, but the mobile networks and phone connections were down. There were a few landslides but were not serious. An earthquake of this intensity is pretty severe but this quake didn’t cause any damage because it occurred offshore. Magnitudes of earthquakes 5 and 5.4 were recorded in the same region as aftershocks. More tremors were felt in Santiago.

Chile is located on the Pacific ring of fire and has a history of high magnitude earthquakes. People living in this region are always under alert as even a small tremor could cause immense loss of lives and properties.

Earthquakes occur due to the movement of tectonic plates in the earth. The faulty or weak zones are those where more earthquakes are caused. There was an indication of rupture along the subduction megathrust fault. The quake was felt in the neighboring regions of Argentina too. Valparaiso was jolted but remained unaffected; evacuation was canceled as there was no possibility of a tsunami. The initial magnitude was 6.7, and later it was modified to 7.1.

Discovery Of Exoplanets

NASA has discovered seven Earth-sized planets near a star. They are the hope that they could sustain life. Google represented the planets with a doodle too in the happy mood. TRAPPIST-1 is the transiting planets and planetesimals small telescope. A star was discovered in the Aquarius constellation 40 light years away from the Earth. All the seven planets circle the TRAPPIST-1 in orbits from one and a half to twenty days. Six Exoplanets have a temperature range of 0-100 degrees Celsius. Three of these planets are known to have water in the form of oceans. These planets are rocky and are sized same like Venus or Earth. All these planets are warm as the parent star is dim.

These TRAPPIST-1 planets are very close to each other and fit in the Mercury’s orbit to be precise. The heart star of this system is 200 times dimmer than the sun. The glow is red or salmon-colored.
Three exoplanets are in the habitable zone known as the Goldilocks zone. Here, the stellar energy is in the right amount. These planets are under scrutiny as no other star has seven earth-sized planets with favorable conditions. Studies are going on though to know about the living conditions.

The discovery was made using the NASA’s exoplanet hunting Spitzer space telescope. It uses the infrared ray technology, and the data gave them the weights, densities, and masses of the planets. The telescope has the same orbit of the earth and is functional till 2018. Exo-planet means a planet outside our solar system. Almost 3500 exoplanets were discovered till now, but none of them gave the hope of sustaining life on them. All the hopes are pinned on these seven planets now. Coming to the matter of TRAPPIST-1, it is an ultra-cool dwarf star maybe a bit larger than the planet Jupiter. Further studies will be made by the Hubble’s and James’s telescopes.

The Four Earthquakes Of Italy

The mountainous region of Italy was shaken by four earthquakes in four hours. The tremors have deadly reminded the people of earthquakes they faced a year before. 18th Jan instilled fear in the minds of the people. Buildings collapsed, but there were no injuries or deaths. The regions affected were Abruzzo, Lazio, and Marche. In the previous earthquake, almost 300 people lost their lives. Due to heavy snowfall, these areas were covered in blankets of snow, and the rescue operations were hindered as they had difficulty in reaching the remote villages in the mountains and remote lying farms. The tremors were felt in Rome also, and people became tensed, and metro services were halted.

The first tremor was felt at 10:25 am and the second one occurred at 2:30 pm. The magnitudes were 5.3 and 5.7. In Amatrice, the bell tower of a church came crumbling down. The village of Montreal was the epicenter of the earthquake as it falls under the category of faulty zones. Many villages were under the impact of cold winds and low temperatures. People were waiting outside for further instructions which were delayed due to extreme weather conditions. About one lakh people were stranded due to the loss of power, and there was a risk of avalanches too that could damage the situation further. The problems were two- snow and earthquake. Many of the hamlets were covered in snow and were difficult to approach. Many regions in Italy lie on seismic fault lines that make them vulnerable to earthquakes. Loss of power, disruption in communication systems and snowfall made the situation even worse. Days later, there were almost 45000 aftershocks in various regions. The Eurasian and African tectonic plates are always in conflict with each other causing tremors. Even the four quakes came in succession; there was no much loss bringing relief to lakhs of people.