Last week, Tri-City Medical Center faced a cybersecurity attack, prompting the diversion of ambulance traffic and a declaration of "an internal disaster." The Oceanside facility assured the community that its emergency department is equipped to handle private vehicle arrivals and is collaborating with health system partners to ensure continued healthcare provision.
Although the exact nature of the attack was not specified, Tri-City officials acknowledged a "cybersecurity challenge," citing similarities to incidents affecting healthcare providers nationwide. Recent federal cybersecurity bulletins highlight the severity of ransomware threats, with the malicious software, including variants like "NoEscape," posing significant risks across various sectors.
Sai Huda, CEO of CyberCatch, emphasized healthcare's vulnerability, noting that organizations are targeted to steal valuable patient record data for financial gain.
“I would say healthcare is at the top. They are the primary target today,” said Sai Huda, CEO at CyberCatch, according to Fox 5 San Diego.
“The way they want to get money is to infiltrate an organization, steal the data, which is patient record information,” Huda said. “Data is very valuable so the data can be sold on the dark web for an average of $1,000 per medical record. That’s a lot higher than even credit card information which goes for about $110 per record,” he added.
Tri-City's Chief External Affairs Officer, Aaron Byzak, confirmed the activation of their “incident command center”, also known as code orange, and collaboration with authorities to manage the situation.
"Our priority is our patient’s health and safety, and protecting their private health information," the statement says, via Facebook post. "This is a fluid situation and we appreciate the community's support and understanding."
For more details, read Tri-City Medical Center’s full statement Here.