Australian Medical Clinic Records Hacked and Held for Ransom

A medical clinic in Gold Coast, Australia recently fell victim to Russian hackers looking to make some extra money. The entire patient database was hacked and encrypted. The encryption has made it impossible for the medical practice to access the records.

The Russian hackers are demanding only $4000 as a ransom. This makes authorities believe that these hackers are not very experienced as most experienced hackers tend to opt for a more high profile target and a larger ransom. However, the recent trends have indicated that most scammers and fraudsters are now opting for many low-yield targets instead of a few high yield ones. This tactic tends to be result in higher profits.

The Australian medical practice that was targeted is co-owned by David Wood. Wood was under the impression that the Miami Family Medical Centre’s anti-virus program was all the security needed.

The truth is that organizations need to realise that anti-virus software does simply not provide all the protection that organizations and businesses need. This is especially true for businesses who keep confidential information on file. For example, credit card details, addresses and medical information should be given the best digital security measures possible. These businesses owe it to their customers to guard the information that they have been trusted with.

Currently, Miami Family Medical Centre is getting along without the patient records that have been encrypted. They have been obtaining the important medical they need from the patient and other medical practices and laboratories in the meantime. The medical centre is still considering whether they will pay the $4000 ransom or try to find a professional who can retrieve the information for them.

There have been reports of other Australian businesses falling victim to hackers as well. Another local business who failed to properly secure their database had the credit card information of all their customers stolen. The business had the credit card details of more than a half of a million customers on file when they fell victim to hackers in August last year. Other local businesses are urged to learn from these unfortunate cases and increase their digital security measures.