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May 16, 2017

Richmond, Payne Request Hearings on Ransomware Attacks on Healthcare Sector

(WASHINGTON) – Today, Rep. Cedric L. Richmond (D-LA), Ranking Member of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Protection Subcommittee, and Rep. Donald M. Payne Jr. (D-NJ), Ranking Member of the Emergency Preparedness, Response and Communications Subcommittee, sent a letter to Committee on Homeland Security majority requesting hearings on the cybersecurity posture of our healthcare and lifeline sectors in the wake of the worldwide ransomware attacks last week.

Rep. Richmond and Rep. Payne Jr. released the following statement on the request:

“Over the past few days we have watched as hospitals, utilities, factories, banks, and other essential service providers across the globe were crippled by a massive wave of ransomware attacks. Doctors lost access to patient data, medical procedures were cancelled, ambulances had to be re-routed, and hospitals were forced to turn people away. Incidents like this remind us of the vulnerability of our healthcare system and the interconnectedness of our lifeline sectors. We have seen recent attacks carried out against these ‘lifeline’ entities – including the electrical grid and emergency services providers like 9-1-1 call centers. These events show how little we gain from the President’s hollow command that agencies ‘identify capabilities and authorities’ that ‘could be employed’ to assist our most critical infrastructure.”

“That is why we are calling for a hearing to examine the cybersecurity posture of our health care system and the lifeline sectors that support it. The Homeland Security Committee must show that it stands ready to support the Department of Homeland Security and its interagency partners to make sure it has the resources necessary to carry out this crucial mission.”

Link to letter

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Media contact: Adam Comis at (202) 225-9978