The Ransomware Threat: A How-To Guide on Preparing for and Detecting an Attack Before it’s too Late
In February 2016, the computer network at Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center (HPMC) was down for more than a week as the Southern California hospital worked to recover from a ransomware attack. Hospital administrators declared an internal emergency as staff struggled to access patient records and computer systems critical for patient care. Some patients had to be transported to other hospitals to maintain their continuity of care. All the while, attackers held the hospital’s computer systems hostage until a ransom of 40 Bitcoins – approximately $17,000 – was paid. Only then could the hospital regain use of its files that had been surreptitiously encrypted by malware.