LifeLabs Canada hit by a Ransomware Attack


LifeLabs, which happens to be Canada’s largest community diagnostics center was hit by a ransomware attack in October this year. And the news is now out that the diagnostics services offering company paid a ransom to free up the data from malware as the cyber attack impacted data of over 15 million patients across Canada.

According to an open letter released yesterday, LifeLabs identified the cyber attack in mid-October when its IT staff found that their computer network systems were being fraudulently accessed and customer info such as names, addresses, email details, login info, passwords, DoBs, health card numbers, and lab test results could have been impacted.

CEO Charles Brown of LifeLabs issued an apology to his company’s customers and said that such incidents will never-ever repeat in the record of the company in the future.

What’s interesting in this ransomware attack of LifeLabs is that the company’s IT staff in coordination with some cyber experts negotiated a deal with the hackers to retrieve data, as they felt the backed-up info was unreliable.

Mr. Brown of LifeLabs admitted that his company will be offering cybersecurity protection services such as identity theft and fraud protection insurance to all the impacted customers all next year.

Brown also stated in the open letter that his company opted for paying a ransom due to a fact that the locked-up data was related to 15 million customers, vastly those located and using LifeLabs services from BC and Ontario.

Prima Facie revealed that hackers could have accessed info of over 85,000 customers from Ontario since 2016.

Cybersecurity Insiders has learned that BC Health Minister Adrian Dix confirmed that LifeLabs contacted and informed about the malware attack on October 28. And the Office of BC Information and Privacy Commissioner Michael McEvoy took of the incident on November 1st, 2019.

As the company wanted to thoroughly investigate the incident before revealing to the world, it took almost 2 months for LifeLabs to make the incident public.

Naveen Goud
Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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