Breaking News

Microsoft Says : Cyberattack on healthcare is ‘criminal activity and cannot be tolerated

Microsoft Says : Cyberattack on healthcare is ‘criminal activity and cannot be tolerated, COVID-19 vaccine and treatment researchers in Canada, the United States and other countries are being targeted by threats in Russia and North Korea, says a Microsoft executive. 

Tom Burt, corporate vice president of security and customer trust, said in a blog today that it is one of the reasons that Microsoft President Brad Smith will urge nations participating in the Paris Peace Forum today to affirm that international law protects health care facilities and to take action to enforce the law. 

"We believe the law should be applied not only when attacks originate from government agencies, but also when they originate from criminal groups that governments allow to operate, or even facilitate, within their borders," Burt wrote. 

"This is criminal activity that cannot be tolerated." "We believe that these attacks are inconceivable and should be condemned by all civilized society."

 This is not the first report of cyber attacks to health researchers. Back in April, Palo Alto Networks warned of ransomware attacks against institutions. 

However, Burt said that the recent attacks seen by Microsoft were targeting seven prominent companies directly involved in research on vaccines and treatments for Covid-19. One interpretation is that the attackers seek investigations to steal. Microsoft says the targets include "leading drug companies and vaccine researchers in Canada, France, India, South Korea and the United States." 

He attributes the attacks to a group he calls Strontium, an actor from Russia, and two actors from North Korea whom Microsoft calls Zinc and Cerium. "Strontium continues to use password enforcement and brute-force login attempts to steal login credentials," Burt said. 

“Zinc has primarily used spear-phishing decoys to steal credentials, sending messages with fabricated job descriptions claiming to be recruiters. Cerium participated in spear-phishing email lures using Covid-19 topics while posing as representatives of the World Health Organization. 

”Microsoft notes that more than 65 healthcare-related organizations have joined the November 2019 Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace.

 They include organizations like the pharmaceutical giant Merck, top hospitals like the Metropolitan Hospital in Ecuador, and government health institutes like the Polish National Institute of Public Health. Microsoft. It also notes that earlier this year, the CyberPeace Institute and the International Committee of the Red Cross spearheaded an effort by 40 international leaders calling on governments to stop attacks on healthcare. 

In May, a group of legal experts the world's leading international organizations, in what is known as the Oxford Process, issued a declaration This statement made it clear that international law protects medical facilities at all times, Burt added. In August, the Oxford Process issued a second statement emphasizing that organizations that research, manufacture and distribute Covid-19 vaccines are also protected.

No comments