Ransomware threatens 55k patients' information at ABCD Pediatrics

An ABCD Pediatrics employee discovered a software virus at the San Antonio-based private practice on Feb. 6, which may have compromised patient names, addresses, Social Security numbers and medical records, among other information.

Here are five things to know.

1. Upon discovery of the virus, which had begun encrypting servers at the practice, ABCD contacted its IT company. Although the practice did not receive any ransom demands, the IT company identified the virus as ransomware.

2. The IT company discovered logs indicating an unauthorized computer program may have accessed portions of the network.

"While ABCD's IT company found no evidence that confidential information was actually acquired or removed from its servers and computers, it could not rule out the possibility that confidential information may have been viewed and possibly was acquired," according to an ABCD news release.

3. The IT company successfully removed the virus and corrupt data from its servers. Any affected data, including protected health information, was restored with secure backup data. The IT company also implemented new security measures at ABCD, to prevent against similar attacks in the future.

4. ABCD notified the FBI, HHS and affected patients about the ransomware virus. There were 55,447 affected patients, according to HIPAA Journal.

5. ABCD set up a call line to answer patient questions and is working with Equifax Personal Solutions to help protect the identity and credit card information of all affected patients. It also encourages affected patients to place a fraud alert on their credit files by calling Equifax, Experian or TransUnion.

Click here to view ABCD's full HIPAA notification.

Editor's note: Becker's Hospital Review reached out to ABCD Pediatrics for comment and will update as more information is available.

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