Ambassador denies Russia turned blind eye to HSE cyberattack

A gang of cyber criminals based in Russia, known as 'Wizard Spider', are believed to be behind the cyberattack.
Ambassador denies Russia turned blind eye to HSE cyberattack

James Cox

The Russian Ambassador to Ireland denies that Russian authorities turn a blind eye to hackers based in the country.

A gang of cyber criminals based in Russia, known as 'Wizard Spider', are believed to be behind the attack launched on the Health Service Executive (HSE) 10 days ago.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is monitoring the dark web amid the threat that the hackers will post patient data today.

Ambassador Yuriy Filatov says Russian authorities find it difficult to apprehend cyber criminals.

Cyberspace

Mr Filatov said: “You know it takes maybe even more than two services working together, to get hold and pinpoint the people who are responsible for any kind of scheme in cyberspace.”

No mass leak of HSE has been confirmed with today's deadline now passed.

The criminal gang had to release patient data if a ransom of €16.4 million was not paid, something which the Government has insisted will not happen.

According to The Irish Times, gardaí are dealing with several complaints from people who believe their data was exposed and is being utilised by fraudsters.

However, there is currently no definitive link between these fraud attempts and the cyberattack.

Gardaí believe criminals not linked to the attack are attempting to take advantage of the confusion caused by it.

Social media messages

Messages circulating on social media have claimed criminals are already using data from the cyberattack.

“Just a heads up everyone, the hackers have started their calling campaign, ringing folks pretending to be from the HSE. They have all details such, DOB, PPS and date of stay in Hospital. They ask for bank details to give a refund,” is an example of the messages circulating in screenshots on social media.

There is no evidence of HSE data online or the dark web so far but gardaí and the NCSC are currently monitoring the situation.

An NCSC spokesperson told The Irish Times: “The Gardaí are also liaising with international policing and security partners. It would not be appropriate to comment on the specifics of what is an ongoing criminal investigation.”

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