Ascension suffers Cyber Attack

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Ascension, a provider of services related to hospital care and senior living facilities, has released an official statement acknowledging a cyber-attack on its IT network. The exact nature of the incident has yet to be disclosed, but unofficial reports suggest it may be a ransomware attack. Confirmation is pending further investigation.

This development underscores a concerning trend where healthcare facilities are increasingly targeted by cybercriminals. Following the recent attack on United Health, Ascension finds itself in the crosshairs, as medical data holds significant value on the dark web.

In response to the breach, Ascension, a non-profit Catholic Healthcare organization, has notified all its business partners of the disruption and advised them to suspend IT connections until further notice.

Mandiant, a security firm recently acquired by Google, has been enlisted by Ascension’s IT team to investigate the incident. The team is working around the clock to ascertain the root cause of the breach.

Despite the disruption, patient care services remain unaffected at present. Plans are in place to restore all services by Friday evening.

Having been embroiled in past controversies, Ascension has promptly informed relevant authorities, including data watchdogs and law enforcement, about the incident. The organization is confident in its ability to recover swiftly from this setback.

This incident comes on the heels of a similar attack on Change Healthcare, a subsidiary of United Health, earlier this year. The ransomware group BlackCat/ALPHV demanded $22 million in ransom, which was paid by United Health in April to recover encrypted data and have stolen information deleted from the criminals’ servers. However, another ransomware group, RansomHub, emerged demanding an additional $15 million to delete the information stored on their servers, highlighting the escalating challenges faced by both victims and law enforcement in combatting cybercrime.

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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