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Anti-Ransomware Resources

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Anti-Ransomware Resources

Practices using health information technology, including electronic health records (EHR), are required to conduct or review a security risk analysis in accordance with the requirements in 45 CFR 164.308(a)(1), including addressing the security (to include encryption) of ePHI data created or maintained by certified EHR technology in accordance with requirements in 45 CFR164.312(a)(2)(iv) and 45 CFR 164.306(d)(3), and implement security updates as necessary and correct identified security deficiencies as part of the MIPS eligible clinician's risk management process. Providers are under a duty to protect data in accordance with security risk analysis. The guidance below offers ways to help keep your data safe from a ransomware attack and what to do if an attack occurs.

If You Are a Victim of an Attack

If your organization is the victim of a ransomware attack, Health and Human Services (HHS) recommends the following steps:

  1. Please contact your FBI Field Office Cyber Task Force (www.fbi.gov/contact-us/field/field-offices) immediately to report a ransomware event and request assistance. These professionals work with state and local law enforcement and other federal and international partners to pursue cyber criminals globally and to assist victims of cyber-crime.
  2. Please report cyber incidents to the U.S. Computer Readiness System (US-CERT) (www.us-cert.gov/ncas) and FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (www.ic3.gov).
  3. **NEW** If your facility experiences a suspected cyberattack affecting medical devices, you may contact FDA’s 24/7 emergency line at 1.866.300.4374. Reports of impact on multiple devices should be aggregated on a system/facility level.
  4. For further analysis and healthcare-specific indicator sharing, please also share these indicators with HHS’ Healthcare Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (HCCIC) at HCCIC@hhs.gov.

How to Mitigate Against an Attack

  • Educate users on common Phishing tactics to entice users to open malicious attachments or to click links to malicious sites.
  • Patch vulnerable systems with the latest Microsoft security patches: https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/security/bulletins.aspx.
  • Verify perimeter tools are blocking Tor .Onion sites.
  • Use a reputable anti-virus (AV) product whose definitions are up-to-date to scan all devices in your environment in order to determine if any of them have malware on them that has not yet been identified. Many AV products will automatically clean up infections or potential infections when they are identified.
  • Monitor the US-CERT website for the latest updates from the U.S. government. See below for current reporting.
  • Utilize HPH Sector Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ISAC) and Information Sharing and Analysis Organization (ISAO) resources. See below for further information.

US-CERT Resources

Original release date: June 27, 2017 US-CERT has received multiple reports of Petya ransomware infections occurring in networks in many countries around the world. Ransomware is a type of malicious software that infects a computer and restricts users' access to the infected machine until a ransom is paid to unlock it. Individuals and organizations are discouraged from paying the ransom, as this does not guarantee that access will be restored. Using unpatched and unsupported software may increase the risk of proliferation of cybersecurity threats, such as ransomware.

Petya ransomware encrypts the master boot records of infected Windows computers, making affected machines unusable. Open-source reports indicate that the ransomware exploits vulnerabilities in Server Message Block (SMB). US-CERT encourages users and administrators to review the US-CERT article on the Microsoft SMBv1 Vulnerability and the Microsoft Security Bulletin MS17-010. For general advice on how to best protect against ransomware infections, review US-CERT Alert TA16-091A. Please report any ransomware incidents to the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3).

Sector ISAO and ISAC Resources

National Health Information-Sharing and Analysis Center (NH-ISAC) has shared the following TLP-White Message and will continue to share information at nhisac.org. Health Information Trust Alliance (HITRUST) has shared the following Threat Bulletin for distribution.

Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) and Office for Civil Rights (OCR) Resources