2017 was a year in which we experienced more cyber attacks than any other year. Attacks have become even more dangerous as hackers today are of course much more sophisticated, and there are unfortunately still organizations that have not prioritized security.
The healthcare industry, hospitals, healthcare organizations, and medical equipment companies have become the number one target of cyber attacks, whether it is breaking into company systems or ransom attacks. Recently have we seen the effects of these attacks as WannaCry was successfully used to attack the British NHS health organization which suffered a severe economic blow as a result.
Most of these attacks are carried out after an action taken by an employee who unknowingly gives attackers an open doorway into a system. Utilizing poor decisions of employees, attackers are able to break into systems and hold systems hostage as tey ask the ransom to release the systems use and data back to the rightful owners
Today, anyone can acquire a RAAS (Ransomware as a service) package as a pre-programmed malware package with coding to perform ransom attacks. This greatly increases the amount of ransom attacks on the organizations in question.
Today the popular ransom demand is virtual currency, primarily because it is not possible to track the attacker through the payment of ransom. A test by Cylance revealed that the reason for the attacks is lack of care and of course high vulnerability on the side of the attack.
2018 will probably not be any easier for the healthcare industry around the world because it is an industry that holds massive amounts of sensitive information. The takeover of medical systems can truly be life and death scenarios, promising more excitement and larger payouts for attackers.