What just happened? A network of systems that manages many hospitals and clinics across West Virginia and Ohio suffered a ransomware attack yesterday. In response, the network shut down its website and online services linked to these hospitals, and began cancelling certain procedures.
The attack on Memorial Health System happened early Sunday morning. The original press release announcing the attack and the response is inaccessible because the non-profit’s website is down. However, Hack Notice was able to pick up and repost the press release while it was still up.
Memorial Health CEO Scott Cantley said staff at Marietta Memorial Hospital, Selby General Hospital, and Sisterville General Hospital have switched to paper charts until the systems can be restored.
Memorial Health cancelled all surgeries and radiology exams for August 16 while notifying patients, but will hold primary care appointments as scheduled. Marietta is still accepting heart attack, stroke, and trauma victims. Because of radiology availability, Selby, along with Marietta’s Belpre campus, are diverting all patients. Memorial Health suggests that anyone who has an appointment with a surgeon or specialist at an affected hospital should call ahead.
According to Ars Technica, all three hospitals started diverting patients to Camden Clark Medical Center, which is about an hour’s drive from Selby.
Cantley emphasized that so far, no known patient personal or financial information has been exposed. No information has been given on who may be responsible for the attack, and no one has made demands thus far.
Ransomware attacks have gotten worse in recent years, with hospitals as a common target. They are lucrative, and there is an ever-growing number of potential targets to hit. Earlier this month, PC hardware manufacturer Gigabyte was hit, and last month hundreds of US businesses were hit through an attack on IT company Kaseya.