Two UF Health hospitals are recovering from a ransomware attack

Updated: Jun. 4, 2021 at 6:04 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

THE VILLAGES, Fla. (WCJB) - On May 31, UF Health Leesburg hospital and The Villages hospital detected unusual activity on their computer systems.

They learned it was a ransomware attack on patient and employee’s protected information.

An IT expert said a ransomware attack can take a couple of days to shut down an entire system.

“They trick people into opening an attachment once their computer is affected it starts reaching out affecting the other computers that are on the network it spreads just like an illness would through people,” said Don Pezet ITProTV co-founder.

Both hospitals suspended the use of most computer platforms, started using pen and paper to document patient visits, and also stopped all computer connections between other UF Health campuses and local partners.

Most of the time hackers will attack large companies and demand millions of dollars.

“They block the entire computer demanding a ransom and they’ll set a 24-hour timer. They’ll say you need to pay this ransom within 24 hours or the price doubles so they increase it and that amount when talking about an individual computer might not be so bad but for an entire company often times its millions of dollars,” said Pezet.

TV20 reached out to u-f on the situation and said they right now they wouldn’t comment on the amount of money, but they don’t believe any patient or personnel records have been compromised or shared.

Copyright 2021 WCJB. All rights reserved. Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.