Hackers claim they will stop targeting healthcare organizations amid COVID-19 outbreak

Two leading cybercriminal groups have said they will stop targeting healthcare organizations as the coronavirus outbreak spreads, according to Forbes.

BleepingComputer founder Lawrence Abrams reached out to various cybercrime groups, asking them if they will continue to target health and medical organizations during the pandemic.

One ransomware-focused group DoppelPaymer said that they “always try to avoid hospitals, nursing homes,” reports Forbes. When they conduct attacks on government, they “do not touch 911.” However, at times emergency communications are encrypted due to network misconfigurations.

DoppelPaymer said that if a medical or healthcare organization does get encrypted in a cyberattack by mistake they will provide a free decryption code. However, pharmaceutical companies will not receive these free decryption codes.

Additionally, the operators of Maze ransomware said they would stop targeting healthcare organizations until “the stabilization of the situation with the virus,” according to Forbes. Security vendor Emisoft told organizations that they will offer free ransomware recovery services to critical care hospitals if they are targeted in ransomware attacks.


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