Law enforcement authorities are investigating the death of a patient in Dusseldorf. Apparently, the indirect cause of the woman’s death was an attack by a ransomware virus on a hospital at the University of Dusseldorf.
The hospital’s computer systems were attacked by a ransomware virus on September 10. In total, more than 30 internal servers of the medical institution were infected. Due to the inoperability of information systems, the patient, who needed emergency medical care, was sent to a hospital in the city of Wuppertal, located 30 km from Dusseldorf. Unfortunately, the doctors did not manage to deliver the patient to the hospital on time.
This is the first death related to ransomware attacks, although the virus was only an indirect cause. However, if, as a result of the investigation, the police conclude that it was the inability of the hospital in Dusseldorf to accept the patient that caused the death, then the operators of the ransomware virus will be charged with murder.
According to the German publication RTL, the police have already contacted the attackers and they have withdrawn the ransom demands. In addition, they sent the hospital’s IT specialists a tool to decrypt files and restore the health of information systems.
Officials from the University of Dusseldorf hospital said the vulnerability through which the hospital’s information systems were infected with a virus was in widely used commercial software.
In May, it was reported that the computer systems of Fresenius, Europe’s largest private hospital network, headquartered in Germany, had come under attack from the Snake ransomware virus.