Cyberattacks on hospitals

Usually, the fighters will not attack hospitals during a war. In Cybercrime, hackers have no such qualms. Because, on average, in the US, hospitals are attacked approximately every 7 seconds and 24 hours a day. The attacks come from everywhere: hackers, organized crime, cyber-terrorists, students from the neighborhood, everyone does it. The company SXSW Interactive and the University of Michigan have identified several types of hospital piracy.

For example, China does not grant visas to its nationals who have lung diseases. Also, to be able to travel abroad, Chinese students collect pictures of healthy lungs they subtilised in US hospitals. Chinese hackers feed the black market with X-ray images.

Pirates have imitated the site of a large hospital and they have invited doctors to receive a personal payment of deposit by entering their identification codes. In fact, hackers have copied this personal information to empty the accounts. Now, but a bit late, this large hospital no longer allows remote access on the pay site.

A giddy nurse opened the door of a hospital’s information service. She downloaded the Angry Birds software on her Android phone from a Bulgarian site. This download was accompanied by malware. When she was connected to their email account from her phone, a screen capture program recorded her login credentials. Her account was used to send a million spam messages to Harvard University, causing Verizon blocking.

Increasingly, hospitals are targeted by hackers in order to obtain payment of a ransom. Hackers blocking computer access to a hospital or a large organization and offer its release against payment of a ransom. These failures have important implications, because hospitals are unable to provide care to patients in a timely manner. An Hollywood hospital was stuck one week because of pirates who demanded more than $ 3 million in Bitcoin. Ultimately, the hospital has only paid a ransom of 17,000 dollars to get access to its files, something that would have been unnecessary if offline backups were made.

These attacks look like nightmare scenarios, but they are now becoming the facts of every day, because hospitals have not made cybersecurity a top priority with an appropriately sized budget. See also http://spectrum.ieee.org/

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