Threat Management, Malware, Ransomware

Heart attack: Ransomware encrypts Australian cardiac clinic’s patient files

Employees of Melbourne Heart Group in Malvern, Australia, have been unable to access patients' medical records following a January ransomware attack that encrypted the health care provider's files.

The cardiology clinic disclosed the incident today on its website's home page. "We have been assured that no patient's privacy has been compromised in any way," the statement reads. "We are working through this issue with our IT provider and hope to resolve it as soon as possible."

Melbourne Heart Group claims patient privacy was not affected, and has assured the public that its clinics are "operating as usual" and patients are not being turned away.

Approximately 15,000 patient files have been encrypted, according to a report in The Age, which notes that the ransomware is believed to be from North Korea or Russia, although the origins of the criminals are unknown.

Bradley Barth

As director of community content at CyberRisk Alliance, Bradley Barth develops content for SC Media online conferences and events, as well as video/multimedia projects. For nearly six years, he wrote and reported for SC Media as deputy editor and, before that, senior reporter. He was previously a program executive with the tech-focused PR firm Voxus. Past journalistic experience includes stints as business editor at Executive Technology, a staff writer at New York Sportscene and a freelance journalist covering travel and entertainment. In his spare time, Bradley also writes screenplays.

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