Security researchers have issued a warning about hackers targeting multiple healthcare organizations in the U.S. through the exploitation of the ScreenConnect remote access tool. The attackers are utilizing local ScreenConnect instances linked to Transaction Data Systems (TDS), a nationwide pharmacy supply chain and management systems solution provider.
Huntress, a managed security platform, detected the attacks on endpoints from two healthcare organizations, observing network reconnaissance activities indicative of potential escalation. The breaches occurred between October 28 and November 8, 2023, with ongoing threats likely persisting.
Furthermore, the attacks share similar tactics, techniques, and procedures, involving the download of a payload named text.xml. This payload, containing C# code, loads the Metasploit attack payload Meterpreter into the system memory, utilizing non-PowerShell methods to avoid detection.
Additional processes were launched through the Printer Spooler service. The compromised endpoints, operating on a Windows Server 2019 system, belong to distinct organizations—one in the pharmaceutical sector and the other in healthcare—connected by their use of a ScreenConnect instance. The ScreenConnect instance is tied to the domain ‘rs.tdsclinical[.]com,’ associated with TDS.
At the same time, the threat actors took various steps, including installing additional remote access tools like ScreenConnect or AnyDesk instances, ensuring persistent access to the environments. The attackers also attempted to create new user accounts for sustained access.
While it remains unclear if TDS experienced a breach or if credentials were compromised, Huntress attempted to notify the company, now known as ‘Outcomes’ after a merger, but received no response. The incidents underscore the need for enhanced cybersecurity measures in the healthcare sector to safeguard against such targeted attacks.