Urgent Security Risk
Windows users are at risk of a new ransomware strain, and need to take immediate precautions. On May 12, 2017 a new strain of the Ransom.CryptXXX (WannaCry) strain of ransomware began spreading widely impacting a large number of organizations.
WannaCry is demanding a ransom of $300 to $600 in Bitcoin to be paid by May 15, or, in the event that deadline is missed, a higher fee by May 19. The messages left on the screen say files will remain encrypted. It's not yet clear if there are flaws in the encryption scheme that might allow the victims to restore the files without paying the ransom.
It is getting into devices that are behind in patches. Make sure all desktops and servers are up to date on patches, specifically with Microsoft fix—MS17-010—. Because of how huge of a security risk this is, Microsoft has decided to release patches for EOL products like XP and Server 2003, you can find them here.
In general, you should also be extremely suspicious and cautious of all e-mails you receive especially emails that ask you to open attached documents or click on Web links.
If you have seen nonstandard activity or have something state Ransomware you should immediately shut everything down. Call your IT vendor and they will begin mitigating the damages.