Locky ransomware seems like a productive tool for hackers as they’ve already reaped at least one ransom holding a hospital’s computers hostage. Now another situation has popped up where a U.S. hospital cannot access their computers.
Ransomware has a Kentucky hospital locked out of their computers and once they pay a ransom everything will go back to normal. Unless of course they find a way to bypass this pesky ransomware. It was bound to happen again after the California hospital hit last month paid their hackers a ransom to gain control back of their computers once they were hacked with the ransomware. You can hear about that case in the above video.
Arstehnica News reports on March 23 that the Methodist Hospital in Henderson, Kentucky, has shut down its desktop computers and Web-based systems due to the Locky ransomware. They shut down the computers in an effort to fight the Locky crypto-ransomware spreading through the hospital’s network. The hackers in this case are asking for $1,600 dollars to be paid in four bit coins.
The Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles paid the small ransom last month when hackers held their computer system for ransom, by locking them out of the system. They couldn’t access patient records, billing information or even scheduled appointments.
It might sound ridiculous that the Los Angeles hospital paid $17,000 to gain access back into their own computers, but it was the lessor of two evils when it came to their business side of operations, as well as their patient care. They paid the amount and were granted access back to their computers, because without them they couldn’t keep the hospital up and running.
The $17,000 dollars was probably nothing in comparison to what they would have spent to have experts come in and try to regain access, not to mention the time that it would take. With their computers down they were losing money, probably much more than the ransom would cost, so they took the easiest and most economical road… they paid the ransom. Although it probably wasn’t the most ethical road to take.
So what is the Kentucky hospital going to do? David Park, who is an attorney for the hospital, said that the hospital may pay the ransom. “I think it’s our position that we’re not going to pay it unless we absolutely have to,” said he attorney. Park also confirmed that the FBI is working with the hospital on this matter.
Update: According to Threat Post.com, the hospital in Kentucky is back up and running with their computers and they have posted on Twitter that they did not pay a ransom to get their computers back on track! While this strain of ransomware “Locky” has only reared its ugly head a short time ago, it is gaining quiet the name for itself.