Hospital pays hackers to get network back

The Hollywood hospital was the victim of a 'ransomware attack'

Hospital Pays Hackers to Get Network Back
It's one thing for spam mail and viruses to slow your laptop down but it's another situation entirely when a hospital's computer network gets attacked.

Staff at the Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center have been dealing with what authorities are labelling a 'ransomware attack'.

The attack, which is thought to be random, has been going on for more than a week and is currently being investigated by the FBI, the Los Angeles Police and forensic experts that have been privately hired by the hospital.

In exchange for the return of the hospital's data, these ransomware hackers are asking for $3.6 million, a fee the hospital and the authorities do not plan on providing.

Late on Wednesday evening the hospital agreed to pay the hackers $17,000 in Bitcoins.

A statement released by the hospital said: "The quickest and most efficient way to restore our systems and administrative functions was to pay the ransom and obtain the decryption key. In the best interest of restoring normal operations, we did this."

This types of attacks are becoming increasingly common and they consist of hackers infiltrating a computer system and then holding your personal files hostage in an attempt to extort money from the computer user.

For those worried about coming into contact with a ransomware attack of their own experts suggest the best way to avoid this trouble is to never open attachments from unsolicited emails and keep a copy of all your files on an external hard drive.

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