How this tool could help protect your hospital from ransomware

In a positive development, last week, MITRE unveiled a ransomware resource center for the healthcare sector. The online resource aims at aiding healthcare organizations to prepare against ransomware attacks. But, would the MITRE tool serve its purpose?

How this tool could help protect your hospital from ransomware

As per the available reports, ransomware attacks over the healthcare sector have escalated tremendously. For instance, the most-recent reports point at a 45% increase in ransomware attacks on the industry since November 2020. Even CISA has cautioned healthcare providers to guard against ransomware attacks.  As per the CISA advisory, hackers have begun targeting the industry with malware, such as TrickBot and Bazarloader malware, which act as launching pads for ransomware attacks.

Unfortunately, small healthcare providers lack the resources necessary for handling such threats. Not everyone can afford to employ cybersecurity teams. And those who can, suffer from limited resources and lack of information about the threat landscape.

A tremendous disadvantage against ransomware attacks.

Thus, the new MITRE resource might be of some help to the battered healthcare providers. MITRE, the American non-profit that supports several U.S. government agencies, claims that this resource could help the industry guard itself against ransomware.

The website addresses this threat via the NIST cybersecurity framework. It curates a database of TTPs useful against ransomware attacks. This includes response and recovery TTPs also.

How to navigate the ransomware resource center

As new visitors, the best way to explore the library is to start from the homepage.

You can begin by exploring the resource table over the front page. But it might work for you, if do not have a security framework in place. The table is useful for those who are looking for specific advice. It lists the tools as per the NIST cybersecurity framework.

Otherwise, you should start by selecting your role in your organization. It would help you to explore the available resources in a sequential manner.

For example, managers are guided towards advice on risk management, such as the assessment of cybersecurity operations and technical readiness. While the IT staff gets directed to resources on designing defenses. You can find information on response planning and restoring services as well.

You’d also get a list of cybersecurity forums that share threat intelligence and mitigation strategies.

Other relevant parts of the website include a resource library and the reading room. These can be used for searching tools and reading the latest news on ransomware.

The website has resources for small hospitals and clinics also. This includes resources for healthcare providers that cannot afford full-fledged security teams.

In conclusion

Last year, about 500 healthcare organizations suffered a ransomware infection. In some cases, hospitals had to reroute patients to other facilities. Unfortunately, whereas, larger facilities bounced back easily, smaller practices couldn’t. Similarly, practices that couldn’t afford cybersecurity staff suffered heavily. So, you need to take the threat of ransomware seriously.

With this in mind, ensure that the risk assessment of your IT systems is done properly. Ask your IT staff to go through the MITRE resources, and figure out the assessments that fit your profile. Once you are done with the assessment, then you need to create a plan for managing the risks. So, look at the TTPs in the resource center, and identify those that you can implement in your setup.

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