Bitcoin Ransomware Attacks Now on Hospitals

The ransomware attacks continue across the internet. In a latest trend, the hackers seem to have chosen healthcare centers and hospitals to be the next set of victims. A hospital in Kentucky, United States has become the most recent victim of ransomware attacks.

According to reports, the Methodist Hospital based in Henderson, Kentucky fell to a ransomware attack few days ago. As a result, many important files and computer systems were rendered useless after they were encrypted by the malware. The loss of access to these files and computers had forced Methodist hospital to declare an Internal State of Emergency. The same was announced on the hospital’s website as well.

The Methodist Hospital’s website had a red banner announcing that the hospital is currently operating in an internal state of emergency due to a computer virus attack. The hospital came under attack last Friday after receiving an email with a fake attachment. The attachment was labelled as an invoice, leading the personnel to open the file.

The Methodist Hospital was in the state of internal emergency for about 5 days. Now, the alert message on the website is gone and the hospital seems to be functioning normally.

The hackers had demanded a ransom of 4 BTCs in order to provide the decryption key for their files. However, it is not clear whether the hospital paid the ransom or not. The Federal Bureau of Investigation is currently investigating the ransomware attack.

Best Practices on the Internet

It is imperative to follow best practices and use updated security software on both home and office computers. Users should keep themselves safe from these attacks by not opening unknown attachments they receive in their mails and regular backup of important data will also helpful. It is also advisable to ignore the ransom demands and contact law enforcement agencies in case of a ransomware attack as there is no way to be sure about whether the hackers will provide the decryption key after the ransom is paid or not.

Ref: KerbsOnSecurity

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