Ransomware attack on California healthcare center breaches data of 85k patients

    California based Center for Orthopedic Specialists (COS) has made it official that its database was targeted by hackers on a recent note leading to a data breach of 85,000 patients. 

    Going into the details on a further note it is said that hackers launched a ransomware attack on a third party service provider who was hosting the patient data of COS. And the impacted servers were said to be holding data of patients from 3 locations which includes West Hills, Simi Valley, and Westlake Village.

    As soon as the breach was detected the IT vendor dealing with the data of California based Center for Orthopedic Specialists chose to shut down its systems to prevent the spread of ransomware on a further note. And details are out that the breached data includes demographic data of patients, medical records, insurance info, social security numbers.

    Law enforcement who is investigating the attack says that the files are locked from access, but they are still not sure whether ‘data extrusion’ has taken place.

    Malware attacks such as ransomware have increased on healthcare providers on a recent note. The reason, they do not have a choice except to pay gain access to the database.

    Currently, the IT vendors name and the name of the ransomware variant are being put on hold for obvious reasons. 
    Security researchers from Alienvault suggest that the only way to combat with such situations is to have an effective backup in place for business continuity and to have Advanced Threat Detection solution as a proactive measure.

    Note- Ransomware is a kind of malware which intrudes into a database and locks down files from further access until a ransom is paid to the ransomware spreaders or authors. But there is no guarantee that the hacker will return the decryption key in exchange for the ransom.

    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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