Russian crime gang who targeted HSE in cyber attack hold Health Dept to ransom as health service forced ‘back 20 years’

Russian crime gang who targeted HSE in cyber attack hold Health Dept to ransom as health service forced ‘back 20 years’

Posted May 16, 2021

Russian crime gang who targeted HSE in cyber attack hold Health Dept to ransom as health service forced ‘back 20 years’

  • THE Russian crime gang who have crippled the HSE in a cyber attack are also holding the Department of Health to ransom.
  • The Conti ransomware operation is believed to be run by an Eastern European cybercrime group known as Wizard Spider.
  • Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney tonight said a “war room” has been set up as the Government and health service chiefs fight to safely restore their systems without having to pay the web crooks.
  • We revealed yesterday that the gang has demanded up to €16million in ransom off the HSE and they had access to its network for two weeks.
  • Minister Coveney said there were “real consequences” to paying criminals ransom.
  • It was claimed that the hack on the health service has forced the HSE “back 20 years” with GPs being asked to only make ­referrals if it is considered urgent.
  • In previous attacks conducted by the Wizard Spider group, phishing attacks are used to install Trickbot and BazarLoader trojans that offer remote access to infected machines.
  • They then steal credentials and harvest unencrypted data stored on workstations and servers before encrypting all of the devices.
  • They then use the stolen data as leverage to force victims into paying a ransom by threatening to release it on their ransom data leak site if they do not receive payment.
  • The hackers claim to have stolen 700GB of unencrypted files from the HSE — including patient and employee information — while lurking on its system for two weeks.
  • Hospitals across the country reported of being severely impacted by the cyber attack.

– Aoife Horan and Harry Manning | May 16, 2021