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Hackers Hijack Medical Records, Hospital Pays Ransom

In a very alarming case, Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles said hackers used malware to infect their computers, preventing staff from accessing electronic medical records.

The hackers said they would release the records if the hospital paid 40 bitcoins, or about $17,000. The hospital paid the ransom.

Hackers use malware to lock systems by encrypting files and then demand ransom in exchange for the decryption key. The FBI is investigating. The hospital says neither patient care nor medical records were compromised.

Be sure to check out the April issue of ED Legal Letter for more about this.