- MedStar Health rebutted media reports that a nine-year-old flaw in its IT system allowed hackers to break into its computer servers and hold data hostage.
- The reports stemmed from an Associated Press report, which said the health system was warned in 2007 that the vulnerability existed. The AP cited an unidentified source close to the investigation.
- Neither MedStar nor the FBI have said whether the attack involved ransomware.
The weakness relates to a J Boss application server supported by Red Hat, an open-source software company based in Raleigh, NC. In 2007, Red Hat and the federal government issued a warning the server was “routinely misconfigured” to allow unauthorized individuals to alter it, Becker’s Hospital Review reported. A second warning was issued in 2010.
In a statement, MedStar spokeswoman Ann Nickels said cybersecurity solutions giant Symantec “has been on the ground from the start of the situation and has been conducting a thorough forensic analysis.”
Nickels added Symantec had ruled out the 2007 and 2010 fixes as contributing factors in the malware event.
MedStar was forced to shut down its entire computer network for several days. Officials said Monday that online operations were mostly up and running again and no patient or associate data appeared to have been compromised.