As long as people are still getting infected with COVID-19, threat actors will continue to find ways to exploit the global pandemic.
We have seen how these malicious actors leveraged the situation multiple times in the last two years, most recently with a wave of phishing emails based around the new Omicron variant.
Now, the Maryland Health Department is dealing with a cyberattack that took some services and resources on its website offline, including pages involving the Medicaid application process, local nursing home safety information, and ordering free in-home testing for sexually transmitted infections.
Maryland cyberattack possibly ransomware?
The cyberattack on the Maryland health department comes just three days after the Omicron variant was found in the state, putting pressure on government officials to quickly resolve the situation.
The attack delayed the reporting the reporting of the latest COVID-19 numbers in the state. And that isn't all.
The Washington Post reports that the Department of Health’s website rerouted to the state’s flagship webpage, www.maryland.gov, as officials worked to determine if any information had been stolen, suggesting this outage could be the result of a ransomware attack.
Andy Owen, spokesman for the health department, had this to say regarding the situation:
"The Maryland Department of Information Technology, the Maryland Department of Health, and the Maryland Department of Emergency Management are working closely with federal and state law enforcement partners to address the incident and to gather additional information. Certain systems have been taken offline out of an abundance of caution and other precautions have and will be taken."
With dozens of resources and services for the health department unavailable, some have taken their frustrations to Twitter, urging the state to resolve these issues.
Ankit Gupta, the founder of Bicycle Health that provides virtual care for Opioid Use Disorder, tweeted this:
Though he later realized the situation was out of the state's control and deleted his tweet:
Follow the SecureWorld News page for any updates on the situation.