Devastating attack leaves many Americans scared and confused

This country used to know how to defend itself. But now things are starting to fall apart.

And a devastating attack left many Americans scared and confused.

Ascension Health, one of the nation’s major health care networks, reported a cyberattack on Wednesday that disrupted “access to some systems.”

Ascension issued a statement stating that it “detected unusual activity on select technology network systems,” which it believes was “due to a cyber event.”

The St. Louis-based organization is the fourth-largest health-care system in the United States, with over 140 facilities.

Ascension also has a pharmaceutical system, although the company did not disclose whether its pharmacy network was impacted by the hacking attack.

“Our care teams are trained for these kinds of disruptions and have initiated procedures to ensure patient care delivery continues to be safe and as minimally impacted as possible,” said the statement.

“There has been a disruption to clinical operations, and we continue to assess the impact and duration of the disruption.”

The health care firm also stated that it is examining the cybersecurity incident to determine whether any of its patients’ sensitive information was compromised.

“Should we determine that any sensitive information was affected, we will notify and support those individuals in accordance with all relevant regulatory and legal guidelines,” Ascension said.

The suspected hack had an impact on some patients’ hospital visits, including a man in Southfield, Michigan, who checked himself into the hospital afraid his cancer had returned.

Zackery Lopez claimed he had to wait seven hours for pain medicine, and that he watched mayhem on the hospital floor as personnel attempted to cope with the cyberattack.

“Right now it is crazy. Nurses are running around. Doctors are running around. There’s no computers whatsoever they can use,” Lopez told Fox 2. “So, they’re actually using charts.”

Cyberattacks on hospitals and pharmacies have increased in recent years, with cybercriminals hacking into a system to lock up private information or crucial health care data and keep it for ransom, according to CBS News. Often, these cybercriminals are based in foreign countries, particularly Russia.

Earlier this year, a health insurance business in the United States was targeted by a cyberattack thought to be carried out by a foreign “nation-state” actor.

UnitedHealth Group, one of the country’s largest health insurance companies, announced in February that its subsidiary Change Healthcare was targeted by a suspected nation-state actor who gained access to its system, preventing some of its pharmacies from processing prescriptions for insurance companies to receive payment.

You have to wonder, are these just Russian and Chinese citizens trying to mess with our country because they can?

Are they ransom seekers, looking to cripple our infrastructure in hopes of a big pay day?

Or are they organized by the governments themselves to attack the United States because we are a direct threat to their geopolitical aspirations?

Which one do you think is more likely?

Stay tuned to the DC Daily Journal.

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