According to media reports, the Los Angeles chapter of Planned Parenthood was the victim of a ransomware attack in October that compromised the personal information of approximately 400,000 patients.
According to a breach notification sent to victims, the unidentified perpetrator stole documents containing sensitive data on some patients from a Planned Parenthood affiliate.
According to CNN, the sensitive data included patients’ insurance information, as well as their diagnosis, procedure, or prescription.
“Law enforcement was notified of this incident,” John Erickson, a spokesperson for Planned Parenthood Los Angeles, was quoted as saying.
“Unfortunately, we do not know the identity of the person responsible, which is not uncommon in these situations. However, we have no indication this was a targeted attack,” the spokesperson added.
According to Erickson, the incident was limited to Planned Parenthood’s Los Angeles chapter, and there is no evidence that the stolen information was used fraudulently.
Several major ransomware attacks have occurred in the last year, including one that targeted and hampered Colonial Pipeline, one of the largest US fuel pipelines, according to the report.
General Paul Nakasone, the head of the US Cyber Command and the Director of the National Security Agency, stated in November that the US government was looking for sources of funding for ransomware operatives, many of whom are based in Russia and Eastern Europe and have made millions extorting US companies.
Despite the enormous toll the Covid-19 pandemic has taken on hospitals and other health clinics, many cybercriminals have continued to hold such facilities’ computer systems hostage.