Cyber terrorists have made their way into hospitals, and they are targeting ultrasound machines specifically. It appears there is a black market for this content, and people are paying good money for it.
A big reason for this is health machines are running on ancient software. The cyber terrorists use encryption to access the data from ultrasound machines. Since many health sector employees are not knowledgeable about cybersecurity, it’s an easy target and this is why they are getting a beat from cyber-terrorist.
Medical equipment today uses ancient hardware and software. Some of these machines are still running on Windows 2000. Microsoft had long cut off their support for Windows 2000, Windows 95 and Windows XP.
Thanks to the outdated software, cyber terrorists can easily get hold of the patient’s sensitive information. This can cost both the hospital and patient a fortune in ransom.
Anyone who accesses a hospital’s network can easily access all the records. Worse, they can connect to ultrasound imaging devices that are vulnerable to attacks because they use ancient software. Once you breach the network, getting access to details images and other details become very easy. It’s very scary for patients and hospitals that ultrasound machines are vulnerable to hacking.
The wake-up call
There was an attack in 2017, called the WannaCry virus. This virus targeted computers running on old Microsoft Windows systems. It could cause millions of dollars of loss.
These attacks have stolen $92 million. The underlining learning lesson was that you are a hacking target when using an ancient OS that doesn’t have updates and patches regularly.
How to solve this?
Hospitals are responsible for protecting the critical information of their patients. So, it will be a lot better if they start using encryption on their network and files. They can employ someone who can encrypt all of their stuff or use an application to do so.
You don’t need to invest a fortune. Start with small steps, instead of hiring in-house security to expect, hospitals can make their networks secure if they start using VPN networks. These applications use encryptions, which can add a layer of protection over the network.
Does it change anything?
Hospitals don’t care about cybersecurity. They don’t appoint security experts to assure their networks are safe and no one has access to user files. Well, this blew out of proportion because recently there are several attacks on hospitals with the thief looking for valuable information of patients and their records. These hackers then sell this information to the highest bidder to make a profit.
Unless Hospitals don’t take steps to make their data safe from cyber terrorists, the information will keep falling into the wrong hands, and the hospitals will be tied in ransom to get back their patient’s record, or losing their patient for good.