UnitedHealth Pays $22M Ransom After Data Breach

UnitedHealth Group confirmed paying a $22M ransom following a cyberattack on Change Healthcare, impacting significant data.

On May 10th, 2024, UnitedHealth Group’s CEO, Andrew Witty, confirmed at a hearing earlier this month that its subsidiary, Change Healthcare, experienced a cyberattack in February. The corporation admitted to paying a ransom following the breach.

UnitedHealth Group ranked as the fifth largest U.S. company, generated $324 billion in revenue last year. In 2021, it acquired Optum and Change Healthcare, which offers revenue/payment management for healthcare facilities and various health information solutions.

Annually, it processes 15 billion healthcare transactions, affecting one-third of U.S. patient records.

During the hearing, it was disclosed that hackers accessed the Change Healthcare Citrix administration platform on February 12th using leaked credentials. The platform did not support dual-factor authentication, allowing the intruders easy access to internal confidential files and the deployment of ransomware.

unitedhealth group statement on hacking

UnitedHealth Group only discovered the breach nine days after the initial attack. Subsequently, they severed connections to Change Healthcare’s service environment. On February 21st, Google/Microsoft/Amazon cybersecurity experts were called to rebuild Change Healthcare’s infrastructure.

This overhaul included replacing thousands of laptops and reconstructing the data center network and core services.

Post-attack investigations revealed that the BlackCat hacker group received $22 million in cryptocurrency, a ransom provided by UnitedHealth. Witty emphasized their commitment to protecting health information and mentioned that the ransom was paid as part of their effort to safeguard patient data.

They plan to enhance their security architecture to develop robust and practical cybersecurity solutions.

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Aditya Nath Jha is an Engineer from New Delhi, India. His areas of interest include Gadgets, WordPress, speed optimization & latest technology. When he is not busy blogging he loves to write poetry, compose his own songs and has a taste for music! Find him on Facebook, Twitter, Linked in, Instagram. And watch his videos on YouTube.

UnitedHealth Pays $22M Ransom After Data Breach

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