Ca: Olympia House notifying patients about ransomware attack discovered in early August
On August 10, DataBreaches.net reported that Olympia House, an alcohol rehabilitation and drug treatment center in Petaluma, California had apparently been attacked by NetWalker ransomware threat actors but had not responded to an inquiry by this site. By November 9, Olympia House still had not posted any statement on their site or press release, and in Without Undue Delay, DataBreaches.net noted that they had not responded to a second inquiry from this site on November 4, there was no report on the California Attorney General’s site or on their web site or on HHS’s public breach tool. With patient data in the hands of criminals and possibly already being sold or misused on the dark web, DataBreaches.net found the delay in public notification and notification to patients concerning. Olympia House was one of a number of healthcare entities that had not promptly alerted or disclosed ransomware attack and that were discussed in that article.
Yesterday, Olympia House issued a press release that begins by describing the incident as “recent.” When you are notifying four months after the attack, that’s not exactly what this site would call “recent.” Nor would HHS likely consider it timely given the 60 days from discovery window HIPAA sets as the outside limit for notifications.
In their release, Sonoma Recovery Services (d/b/a “Olympia House“) says they were alerted to suspicious behavior within their network on August 7. That date is consistent with NetWalker’s posting on their leak site.
Their investigation, assisted by forensic experts, revealed that files were accessed between July 1 through August 7 and that the types of protected health information may have included names, addresses, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, financial information, health insurance information, as well as medical history and treatment information. The type of information varied by individuals.
Olympia House began notifying individuals whose information was impacted on September 29, 2020. They are offering those affected credit monitoring and identity protection services. From the wording of their press release, it sounds like they are still in the process of notifying individuals. Their release does not disclose how many patients were impacted by this attack.
As of the time of this posting, I do not see any notification on HHS’s public breach tool. There is, however, a link to a notice of a data breach posted on the home page of their web site.
A previous version of this post incorrectly indicated that there had been no posting on California’s breach list. The breach was listed on December 15.