Security & Technology Blog

Case Report: Ransomware Attack Contributes to Death

Cyberattacks continue to multiply in frequency and severity, but ransomware should worry your organization the most. Not only are you faced with the threat of a monetary ransom, but you must deal with damage to your reputation, loss of service, downtime, information sold on the dark web, and compromised data. Things got even worse, however, for a hospital in Germany when they were hit with a ransomware attack earlier this month (New York Times story).

Servers crashed at The University Hospital of Düsseldorf after hackers exploited a vulnerability in the hospital’s VPN. With their systems down, they were forced to turn away patients. One woman who was seeking emergency medical care was denied and re-routed to another hospital. Tragically, she later died due to the delay in treatment. This is reported to be the first death linked to ransomware.

This appalling example illustrates the importance of network security and Disaster Recovery planning. It is critical that you invest in protecting your network. Many organizations seem to think that they are an unlikely target because they are of little value to criminals, however, this attitude is dangerous – and in this example, even deadly.

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