Others demanded a ransom, “at eight figures, which is not something for a regional health care system,” said Alan Liska, analyst at Recorded Future, a cybercity firm. These unusual demands, along with the coordination of the attacks, “seem like it was meant to be a disruptive attack” rather than a profit-seeker, he said.
Mr. Holden said that many health systems opted to negotiate with their extortionists, even as the ransom jumps into millions.
“A large number of victims are dealing with these attacks on their own,” he said.
View from inside
In Vermont, the damage went out through a dispersal network, hitting particularly hard at the cancer center.
“My really good friends are ICU nurses, and they like, there’s no big deal, we all have to do paper charting,” said Ms. Nurse, Charge Nurse. But the cancer center was badly set back for weeks, able to serve in only one in four of its general chemotherapy patients.
Ms. Cargill spent the remaining days of the patients, almost a month later, without experiencing the onset of crying she cannot experience one.
“To look someone in the eye, and tell them they couldn’t have their own living or healing, it was horrible, and completely heart-wrenching,” she said. The very first person, she was a young woman, burst into tears.
“She said, ‘I want to get chemo, I’m a mother of two young children,'” Ms. Kargil said. “She was very fearful, and the fear was tangible.”