INC Ransom attacks NHS Dumfries & Galloway

Incident Date:

March 27, 2024

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INC Ransom attacks NHS Dumfries & Galloway


NHS Dumfries & Galloway


Inc Ransom


Edinburgh, United Kingdom

Midlothian, United Kingdom

First Reported

March 27, 2024

INC Ransom Threatens to Publish Stolen NHS Data

INC Ransom, a ransomware group, is threatening to publish 3TB of stolen data following a cyber attack on NHS Dumfries and Galloway. The victims warned earlier this month that hackers could have acquired “a significant quantity” of patient and staff information. The ransomware gang has published what they’ve called a “proof pack,” including confidential information on a small number of patients.

NHS Dumfries and Galloway aim to deliver excellent care that is person-centered, safe, effective, efficient, and reliable, as well as working with the communities and partner organizations to reduce health inequalities across the region.

Background on INC Ransom

INC Ransom was first observed in the summer of 2023, and it is unclear if they maintain a RaaS (Ransomware-as-a-Service) affiliate operation or are a closed group. INC uses common TTPs (Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures), such as leveraging compromised RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) credentials to gain access and move laterally in a targeted environment.

INC has been observed delivering ransomware using legitimate tools like WMIC and PSEXEC and using other Living-off-the-Land (LOTL) techniques, abusing applications including MSPaint, WordPad, NotePad, MS Internet Explorer, MS Windows Explorer, and AnyDesk for lateral movement. INC has also been observed abusing tools like Esentutl for reconnaissance and MegaSync for data exfiltration.

INC is written in C++ and uses AES-128 in CTR mode to encrypt files, and it also has a Linux version. It is unclear if INC employs any advanced security tool evasion techniques, and there are indications that they may attempt to delete Volume Shadow Copies (VSS) to hinder encryption rollback attempts.

Target Industries and Extortion Practices

INC targets a wide array of industries, including manufacturing, retail, IT, hospitality, pharma, construction, and the public sector. INC practices double extortion and maintains a leak site for double extortion, threatening to expose the victim. INC has made good on threats to expose sensitive data if a target does not pay the ransom demand.

Recent Ransomware Attacks

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