IT Support in Austin: Why Hospitals are a Common Ransomware Target

Ransomware is a nasty form of malware. This malware locks a computer or even a network to prevent user access. Access is not returned to the users unless they pay the requested ransom. This ransom is typically requested in Bitcoin. Though every type of organization is susceptible to ransomware, hospitals are especially vulnerable.  Here’s an explanation of IT support experts in Austin of the vulnerability of hospitals to ransomware attacks:

Why Hospitals are in the Crosshairs of Ransomware Attack

Hospitals are the ideal target for ransomware extortion as they provide essential care and are reliant upon regularly updated information for patient treatment. Consider all of the patient information collected and continuously updated. Everything from patient medication dosages to medical history, responses to treatment modalities and other sensitive information is not only recorded in an electronic manner but updated as time progresses.

If medical care providers can’t access updated patients records, those patients will not receive timely or quality care. If patients are not provided with such a high level of care, they will suffer the consequences in the form of health deterioration. This is the type of nightmare those who work in hospitals need to avoid at all costs, even if those costs are ransoms paid to cyber attackers in the form of Bitcoin. Most hospitals pay the ransom so control of their system is returned.

Can a Price be Attached to Human Life or Health?

This is the question hospital executives and administrators must consider when deciding whether to pay a ransomware ransom. Hospitals are dealing with human beings that are especially fragile. If these individuals are not provided with prompt care catered to the nuances of their unique health challenges, they will endure pain and possibly even perish. It is a stark contrast to other types of businesses that sell things like electronics, building supplies or other products. As an example, a company that sells diapers probably won’t be targeted by a ransomware attacker as there is not the same sense of urgency to return operations to normal as there is in a hospital.

Hospitals Lack Tech-savvy Employees

Another reason why hospitals are the perfect target for these particularly malicious attacks is the fact that they tend to lack tech-oriented personnel. Some have failed to train their staff on digital security protocols. The industry’s focus seems to be in compliance with HIPAA laws and ensuring staff members adhere to the federal government’s standards for safeguarding patient privacy. However, IT support experts in Austin help healthcare companies to train their staff on all things cyber-related.

Do not Underestimate the Threat of Ransomware

Those who work in the healthcare industry might not spend the majority of their day on a computer, yet they certainly should be aware of the fact that ransomware can bring workplace activity and patient care to a grinding halt. Ransomware has emerged as a highly effective means of making money. It is difficult to identify the perpetrators of ransomware due to their tech expertise and use of Bitcoin that can’t be tracked. Those who underestimate ransomware do so at their own peril.

Lean on our IT support team in Austin for digital protection. At Contigo Technology, we provide myriad digital security safeguards along with IT support, disaster recovery, server management, end-user support, cybersecurity training and more. Contact us now for your IT security.