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Ransomware group LockBit apologizes saying ‘partner’ was behind SickKids attack

Ransomware group LockBit apologizes saying ‘partner’ was behind SickKids attack


Our sick kids hospitals recovering from a second cyber security incident in recent weeks this after being offered a solution to its problem from the very people that carry out these kind of attacks Brian Higgins is a security expert cyber security expert based in Ottawa joins us live now to talk more about this Brian appreciate the time.

This morning let’s start with this target here you know we hear about cyber attackers going after for-profit companies or companies that maybe have you know poor environmental records Etc why do they go after places like hospitals I don’t know if hospital is necessarily a Target the ransomware is just such a.

Huge business I mean it’s in billions and there’s a whole economy with it with people that create software people distributed people that collect money and it’s all optimized to getting Revenue so uh it’s like sprayed out everywhere and when it clicks people try and uh milk it and get money from it so it’s it’s presumably it’s usually.

Accidental that they’re they’re hit uh this case is very unusual when someone from the hacker Community pops up and says oh oops we didn’t mean to hit a hospital let me try and help and that’s very unusual and I still I think a little suspicious but hospitals are more vulnerable than a lot of other organizations so they tend to get hit we.

Tend to hear about them and they do a lot of damage I made a bit of an oopsie as introduce you I said Brian Higgins that are Brian o Higgins so let me just correct myself right there Brian I’m So Good In the meantime let’s sort of circle back to this though you know what do you make of ransomware group try to now bring forward this decrypted you’ve.

Alluded to it already here to sort of solve the problem to me that seems like the thief sort of trying to return your key but how do I know they haven’t made a copy or something like that after breaking into your home well you don’t at all it’s uh it’s so I say it very unusual I I’m thinking it’s a little bit suspicious.

Um it’s possibly helpful uh it may be helpful to a very small degree to the hospital for Recovery it may be very helpful whatever the case is they’ve got to get their systems up and they have to clean them and make sure the malware’s not there you don’t want to restore something with malware that it could be later be reactivated as you said with.

Another copy of the key something like that so whatever the case is they need to do a full recovery if this helps them a little bit in that Journey for Recovery I think that’s great but um I don’t know if it makes a lot of difference every situation is different so we really don’t know the details here Brian I can only sort of start to.

Imagine the kind of effort and work that would be involved in kind of cleaning systems especially of a of a place like a hot like the sick kids hospital like what kind of work what kind of hours are we talking about to sort of make sure that you know the code and everything else involved is [__] and span as it were.

Oh yeah so I mean your mileage may vary right uh hospitals are big complex maybe the systems that have patient information are they’re usually not the issue the patient information is very well encrypted and protected and they can recover quickly from those standard office I.T systems but hospitals have so much equipment that uh is all about uh.

You know keeping operating systems running keeping patients alive on the you know in the recovery areas uh and these things are hard to kind of patch and they’re um they’re cut they’re sort of sealed up in software once they’re approved for medical use you can’t just change it and Patch it and do things you know easily uh um so in some cases it.

Takes a year to update software in these devices in other cases they have to you know figure out how this malware got in and kind of block it right that’s right we’re not it’s not clear at this point Brian Perhaps it is to you but from what I understand that the attack on December the 18th may not necessarily be connected to this this recent situation.

Of the Cyber hack as well but it leads to the the issue of the you know hospitals being targets and sort of chaos and everything else that’s gone on during the past you know couple of years of the pandemic Etc do you feel like governments or officials are paying enough attention to cyber security at hospitals that are so as you you know.

You just highlighted there the level of sensitivity there I mean these are people and places that are saving lives yeah clearly when they’re hit it’s uh it’s absolutely it’s really bad uh troubles hospitals have I mean it would be great if they could invest tons in and hire a lot of uh cyber security people.

Um and try and fight this but um you know they have limited budgets and they have to fund operating rooms and they always have that that tension so there’s there’s kind of Never Enough resources for these things and you know right now it’s ransomware it’s been the number one issue for a couple of years probably maybe a couple more years to run before.

It sort of Ebbs economically um but it’s uh yeah it’s just a real problem and uh everyone has to do their best all right I suppose we can expect to see more of this then and perhaps more conversations with you cyber security expert Brian O’Higgins joining us live this morning on cb24 breakfast do appreciate the time thanks so much.

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