Chinese Hackers Steal Nonmedical Data on 4.5 million Patients

A group of hackers believed to be based in China has stolen nonmedical patient data on 4.5 million patients stored in Community Health Systems’ (CHS) computer systems.

According to the Franklin, TN-based health system, medical and credit card records were not stolen, though patient names, addresses, birthdates, and phone and Social Security numbers were taken, the Associated Press reported. According to Modern Healthcare, CHS believes that hackers originally set out to steal the intellectual property on medical devices and other equipment but instead stole data on patients who sought care from its physician practices.

CHS, which owns, leases, or operates 206 hospitals in 29 states, is in the process of notifying affected patients and is taking steps to provide identity theft protection services through the information security firm Mandiant.

The health system announced the breach on Monday, August 18, and said that the malware attacks occurred in April and June.


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