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Quick Refresher: Hacking Headlines from Around the Globe

We’re mid-way through the week and it already feels overwhelming, with headline after headline and hack after hack coming in.

We’ve been rounding up the major headlines from the week and have assembled them here for your perusal and security strategy development.

Cyber Attack Shuts Down Entire Hospital’s Online System

A ransomware attack on Hancock Regional Hospital in Greenfield, Indiana, USA forced the hospital to go offline, lest the hackers responsible get access to patient data; representatives of the hospital state that no confidential personal information was leaked. The attack occurred the night of January 11, after staff noticed a significant slow down on their network. The attackers demanded Bitcoin as payment. As of time of writing the hospital system is still down, with staff using pen and paper until it can be restored.

Takeaway: We think that Raj Samani, chief scientist and Fellow at McAfee, put it best in his comments to SC Magazine: “Cyber-criminals are increasingly looking to cause as much public disruption as possible, and as part of this the global health industry has become a prime target.”

At the same time this shows that a cyber attack can have more long-term consequences than many would like to believe. A particularly devastating attack, like this one, can take down a network for days or weeks at a time. If your enterprise is at all dependent on online sales, networking, or collaboration, you can imagine the damage a simple take down can be for your bottom line.

Amendment January 18, 2018: The hospital reportedly paid the hackers $50,000 in ransom after they changed 1,400 files to only say “I’m sorry.” The systems were restored Monday after the ransom was paid. It is generally not recommended to pay hackers’ ransoms, as there is no guarantees that it will result in the restoration of files. The hospital stated it worked with the FBI on how best to respond.

ThreatMetrix: 1 in 9 Online New Online Accounts Fraudulent

According to a report by IAM vendor ThreatMetrix—”Cybercrime Report in 2017: A Year in Review”—1 in 9 accounts created in 2017 were fraudulent, and hostile account takeovers increased by 170% since 2016. ThreatMetrix believes these trends indicate a transition from short-term to long-term profit goals among hackers and bad actors.

Takeaway: Even as the popularity of biometrics and blockchain increases in IAM, regular account management and monitoring for malicious activity even among known users will need to a part of any comprehensive solution. It may not be as flashy or dramatic as other aspects, but it is vital to preserving your enterprise’s data integrity and your customers’ trust.

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