Toronto's SickKids says it is 'aware' of online statement offering free decryptor

Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children says it is aware of an online statement from a ransomware group that offers a decryptor to restore systems impacted by a mid-December cybersecurity incident.

Canada's largest pediatric health-care centre says in a news release issued Sunday evening that the statement includes "an offer of a free decryptor" after some of its systems were impacted by a ransomware attack on Dec. 18.

The hospital says it has engaged "third-party experts to validate and assess the use of the decryptor" mentioned in the statement.

The hospital had said after the attack that it had delayed lab and imaging results and it could lead to longer wait times, noting that some of its systems could be offline for weeks.

The hospital had said at the time that it was unable to provide details about the nature of the attack, calling it an "active and ongoing incident."

SickKids says in the Sunday statement that it has restored "over 60 per cent of priority systems" as of Jan. 1 and has not made a ransomware payment.

It says there is no evidence to date that personal information was affected by the attack.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 1, 2022.

The Canadian Press