Thursday, September 23, 2021

Ransomware Key Kept Secret by FBI

 As you all know, Ransomware is a tremendous problem right now.  Healthcare is one of the primary targets of these cyber criminals and besides the stress, expense, lost revenue, and other huge problems it creates, there is also the possibility of HIPAA violations as well.

Most small businesses (and I include private practice entities as a small business) cannot survive paying a huge ransom and then also be able to pay for the IT services needed to recover from Ransomware.  

Now imagine if you were hit by this type of strike and then you later find out you could have gotten all of your data back FOR FREE, except for the fact that someone hid the free key from you.

That is precisely what the FBI did to perhaps thousands of business affected by the recent breach of the Kaseya software this summer.

In my office I use Emsisoft for my antivirus software and I follow the company closely in the news.  Emsisoft has been very helpful in the Ransomware space by, when possible, providing free decryption keys to affected companies. 

Because I monitor and read news stories that mention Emsisoft and also because I am concerned about the overall security sector in healthcare, I spend a good deal of time reading about Ransomware.  Today's post deals with why the FBI would have a decryption key and keep it secret from the victims.  Read this story from the Washington Post for all of the details.  

Now, I understand there are 2 sides to every story and that I am sure the FBI felt they were doing the right thing in this case.  However, as a small business owner who could be a victim in some type of cyber attack or theft I tend to lean to the side of the affected businesses.  The article is a pretty interesting read...

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