Ransomware Attack at German Hospital Leads to Patient Death

Recently, on Thursday, the German authorities reported that they had encountered an allegedly misdirected ransomware attack that caused the breakdown of IT systems at a major hospital in Duesseldorf. Due to this ransomware attack, a woman who necessitated to get admitted urgently died after being taken to another city for treatment. 

It happened for the first time that a woman died because of the misdirected ransomware attack. The hospital asserted that the investigators have noticed that the source of the difficulty was a hacker attack on a weak place in “widely practiced commercial add-on software,” which it didn’t recognize.

What happened?

This kind of situation happened for the first time that because of some ransomware attack, a woman died. As the threat actors had attacked a weak place, that was the add-on software. 

After the execution of the operation, the hospital’s systems repeatedly struck, and the hospital wasn’t prepared to access the data. Therefore the emergency patients were taken elsewhere, and operations were suspended, and that results in the death of the women.

However, the hospital wasn’t ready for this kind of attack, and they also stated that “there was no particular ransom demand.” And it made them more confused as there were no indications that the data is lost and its IT systems are being constantly restarted.

The Ransomware Attack

The threat actors have attacked nearly 30 servers in the hospital that have been encrypted last week, asserted by the Westphalia state’s justice minister. Not only this, but there was an extortion note left on one of the servers that were reported by the news agency dpa. 

The note contained an address to get in touch, but there wasn’t any name or any sum. The address that was given to the Heinrich Heine University, to which the Duesseldorf hospital is affiliated, and not to the hospital itself.

However, the DUESSELDORF police contacted one of the perpetrators, and then the perpetrators withdrew the extortion trial and rendered a digital key to decrypt the data. According to the report by the justice minister, the perpetrators are no longer reachable at the moment.

The prosecutors started an inquiry against the unknown perpetrators on mistrust of careless crime. As a patient in a life-threatening situation was assumed to be taken to the hospital but instead she was sent to a hospital in Wuppertal, which was 32-kilometers away from Duesseldorf. 

Moreover, the prosecutors also alleged that this is a challenging and critical situation, as dues to this, someone has lost her life. According to the reports that were given by Emsisoft, the US alone, 764 healthcare providers were attacked only last year by ransomware attackers.

Also recommended to read a complete ransomware Mitigation Checklistand Anti-Ransomware Checklist.

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