Ransomware Group Sells Healthcare Data For Crypto

Ransomware Gang Auctions Off US Healthcare Data For Bitcoin

NetWalker has continued its attack on the healthcare industry in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The newest health system to suffer a ransomware attack was the Crozer-Keystone Health System. The group is currently auctioning the stolen health data via its darknet website. If the data is not purchased within the auction timeline, the group has vowed to leak the data on the web.

NetWalker gave a preview of the files on auction. There were lots of folders with an undisclosed amount of data, mostly in relation to finances. But none of the data relates to patients’ medical records.

The ransomware group claims the Crozer-Keystone Health System has failed to make the demanded ransom in Bitcoin.

The Crozer-Keystone Health System is made up of four hospitals. The health system is located in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. It serves Northern Delaware, Delaware County, and western New Jersey.

The health system addressed the incident. However, they failed to reveal the ransom amount or if personal data of patients was hacked as well.

“After quickly identifying a recent malware attack, the Crozer-Keystone information technology team took immediate action and began remediating impacted systems. Having isolated the intrusion, we took necessary systems offline to prevent further risk. We completed this work in collaboration with cybersecurity professionals across our healthcare system and are currently conducting a full investigation of the issue.”

ransomware attack US healthcare services

Hospitals Are Under Threat This Period

“Attacking a hospital system is a despicable and criminal act, especially in the middle of a pandemic. A number of ransomware groups stated they would not attack healthcare providers for the duration of the pandemic, and, somewhat surprisingly, they have been good to their word. NetWalker was not one of those groups,” said  Brett Callow, threat analyst and ransomware expert at malware lab Emsisoft.

Callow mentioned that such attacks could be dangerous in the long and short run, owing to the fact it might put lots of lives at risk. He gave an account of a situation that lead to the closure of a hospital.

“This is the last thing that’s needed at a time when healthcare services are already stretched to the limit due to Covid-19.”

Last year, more than 700 US healthcare providers had a form of ransomware attack.

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