The 5 most significant cyberattacks in healthcare for 2020

Becker's Hospital Review

Laura Dyrda

The volume and intensity of cyberattacks on hospitals and health systems increased during the second half of 2020, and experts believe there is more to come.

"Healthcare is and has been the No. 1 target for cybercrime and the number of attacks on healthcare organizations have been increasing exponentially over the past few years, primarily because of the value of data they can obtain from a successful attack, and the fact that cybercriminals know that if they lock up systems and data, that has a significant impact on operations," Kathy Hughes, CISO of Northwell Health in New Hyde Park, N.Y., told Becker's in October after a slew of ransomware attacks.

On Nov. 16, the federal government issued a cybersecurity warning to healthcare providers about "credible, ongoing and persistent" threats.

"Cyber teams should be in a constant state of monitoring and proactively looking for issues within their network and systems and be quick to respond. System updates and patching are always critical and all cybersecurity programs should include a very detailed and robust security awareness program as nearly all cyberattacks are initially carried out through a single user's action," said Dave Summittt, CISO of Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Fla.

Here are five of the most significant cyberattacks in 2020 based on the breadth of system disruption and volume of organizations affected.

1. UVM Health Network shut down its...

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