MedStar Health hit by virus affecting system

So no sooner do I get done updating the Mercy Iowa City breach that involved a virus infection of their system, then I see that MedStar Health in Washington also suffered a breach due to virus infection. John Cox of Washington Post reported:

A virus infected the computer system of MedStar Health on Monday, forcing one of the Washington region’s largest health care providers to shut down significant portions of its online operations.

Hospital officials acknowledged the breach, which is being investigated by the FBI, but said they had “no evidence that information has been stolen.”

No information may have been stolen, but this breach has seemingly dealt a serious blow to hospital functioning:

Hospital staff reported that they were unable to access email or a vast database of patient records.

One employee told The Post that the entire Medstar computer system is inaccessible.

“Even the lowest level staff can’t communicate with anyone. You can’t schedule patients, you can’t access records, you can’t do anything,” said the woman, who asked that her name not be used because she wasn’t authorized to speak about the incident.

It’s not yet clear whether there is any ransom demand involved in this incident.

Read more on InHomelandSecurity.com.

Update: MedStar has not yet responded to an inquiry as to whether this involves ransomware, but Washington Post updated their coverage to report that hospital stuff “saw a pop-up on their computer…asking for ransom in ‘some kind of internet currency’.”

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