The cybercriminals stole a huge amount of Norwegian health data in a recent healthcare data breach, which probably affects more than half of the national population.
An unknown hacker or hacker group successfully violated the South East Regional Health Authority’s systems and reported stealing personal information and medical records from approximately 2.9 million Norwegians out of a total of 5.2 million inhabitants.
Health South-East RHA is a healthcare organization that runs hospitals in southeastern Norway, including Østfold, Akershus, Oslo, Hedmark, Oppland, Buskerud, Vestfold, Telemark, Aust-Agder and Vest-Agder.
The health organization announced the healthcare data breach Monday after being alerted by HelseCERT, CERT’s Norwegian department for the health sector, about an “abnormal activity” against computer systems in the region.
HelseCERT also asserted that the healthcare data breach (es) are “advanced and professional” hackers, although it is unclear whether they have successfully exfiltrated the data and, if so, how many people could have the impact.
So far, there is no evidence that stolen data theft has had consequences or effects on patient safety. However, the health organization has ensured that security measures have been taken to limit the damage caused by the theft. ”
“We are in a phase where we are trying to get an overview: it is too early to tell what the scale of the attack is, we are working to gain knowledge on all aspects,” said Kjetil Nilsen, director of NorCERT.
“All indications are that he is an advanced player who possesses the tools and skills to perform such an attack, can be an advanced criminal and offers a wide range of possibilities.”
Why do hackers want your health data?
Digital healthcare has grown to meet the needs of connected healthcare technology that provides better treatment and better patient care.
We know that any organization with a computer runs the risk of cyber attacks from criminals who want to extort money and state-sponsored hackers who want to cause chaos.
As the health sector is part of the essential national infrastructure, along with water, electricity, and transport, it becomes an attractive target for hackers.
Believe it or not, your medical records are worth more to hackers than your credit card data stolen from the dark web markets.
The financial data is of limited duration, but the information contained in the health records – including names, birthdates, policy numbers, diagnosis codes, social security number and billing information – have a much longer shelf life longer. it is rich enough for identity theft.
Scammers can use this data to create fake identities to do all kinds of illegal things in your name, combine a patient number with a number of fake providers and file false claims with insurers and even make false claims with your addresses. stolen, phone numbers, and work history.
How to protect yourself from a Healthcare data breach?
If you are among those affected by the health violation, you must remain vigilant against fraud for the rest of your life, as the risk of identity theft is not short-term, unlike card fraud. credit.
You can follow the following steps to protect yourself:
1) Check your accounts: Be careful if someone using your information never tries to take over or transfer money from your existing accounts. Do not forget that thieves with stolen details can go through your security questions, including the last four digits of your social and postal address. In addition, check unauthorized activities or transfers on your current financial accounts.
2) Deposit taxes in advance: with the information stolen in the hands, cyber-thieves could chain the refund of taxes by presenting taxes in advance and claiming on their behalf. So, to avoid such problems, send the taxes as soon as possible.
3) Remains vigilant: The most important thing to protect against any violation is to remain vigilant because no one knows when and where the stolen identities will be used. Therefore, interested consumers will simply have to pay attention forever.