The first-ever reported human death indirectly caused by a ransomware attack

In September the first death was reported as the first-ever human death indirectly caused by a ransomware attack. The Dusseldorf hospital in Germany was unable to receive the patient as it was in the midst of dealing with a ransomware attack that hit its network and infected more than 30 internal servers. 

The hospital couldn’t accept emergency patients because of the attack, and the woman was sent to a health care facility around 20 miles away, the Associated Press reported.

It appears to be the first case of someone dying as a result of a ransomware. The patient’s death is currently being investigated by German authorities. If the ransomware attack and the hospital downtime are found to have been directly at fault for the woman’s death, German police said it plans to turn their investigation into a murder case.

Cybersecurity experts have warned for years that most hospitals aren’t prepared. Possibly millions of people can, at this moment, be hacked. Health care facilities are one of the biggest targets for cyberattacks. They rely heavily on devices for example via their wirelessly connected and digitally monitored implantable medical devices (IMDs) – which include cardioverter defibrillators (ICD), pacemakers, insulin pumps, and more.

 

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