Recent ransomware attacks on hospitals in the United Kingdom have shown how vulnerable healthcare organizations are to cyber criminals. In the UK, hospitals are only just recovering from the recent hacks which eventually spread across 150 countries globally, highlighting a critical need for cybersecurity investment.
Ransomware is fast-becoming a new internet-based way of making money for criminals. It locks down files on infected computers and hackers demand payment to restore access. In the UK, NHS workers at local hospitals were asked for $300 per computer terminal to unlock their devices. Access to sensitive data, and patient records needed to conduct life-saving operations were blocked.
A British-based cybersecurity expert managed to temporarily contain the attack. However, new versions of the malware were detected this week and they are reportedly much harder to contain.
Computer geeks have been working tirelessly over the past few days to solve the latest problems, which are becoming an ever-increasing problem for organizations not just in the United States but around the world.
Healthcare organizations store millions of confidential clinical and financial records. Hospitals also share sensitive patient information with multiple organizations, and the need for tighter cybersecurity is intensifying.
HANA.EXPERT is just one of the companies helping hospitals protect their healthcare data and applications. They protect cloud applications, websites, web applications, critical databases, files and Big Data repositories from hackers and insider threats.
Symantec is another leading tech firm producing ‘super routers’ that can block bad data before it even enters a home or business network. More sophisticated forms of protection are also being developed daily for government agencies and larger corporations.
According to a study by Symantec, US companies are losing more than $525 million annually because of cybercrime. Attacks against nations, organizations and businesses are now commonplace, the most recent of course being the accusations made by security agencies that Russia hacked the US elections.
Bold Business recently reported that Cloudflare had contracted a bug which placed private client data such as passwords and login details into the coding of other websites. The company has since improved its security, but if the very organizations designed to protect us are penetrable it only emphasizes how important cyber threats have become.
What’s more, the increase in “internet of things” gadgets being controlled via online platforms has led to an increased susceptibility of attack. Interconnectivity comes at a cost as anything from net-connected CCTV cameras, televisions, household appliances and media servers can be compromised.
To help combat these attacks, new security measures are devised daily, right around the world. As soon as a cybersecurity firm manages to protect an organization, hackers will find a way to break in. It’s a constant battle of updating and protecting that shows no sign of relenting. Let’s just hope this latest cyber-attack will encourage governments and organizations to improve their cyber security measures.