FBI Investigating Possible DSHS Hacker

Emily Ramshaw reports:

The FBI is investigating whether a hacker broke into the state’s confidential cancer registry, possibly holding personal information and medical records hostage.

Health and Human Services Commissioner Tom Suehs says state health officials notified his office in early May that a hacker was holding the Texas Cancer Registry hostage and demanding a ransom. Suehs says preliminary investigation results from the FBI indicate the threat may be a hoax, and officials with the Department of State Health Services, which oversees the cancer registry, say they don’t believe the names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers and personal medical information contained in it were stolen. But if the FBI determines private records were revealed, Suehs says, health officials will quickly notify the people listed in the registry.

Read more in the Texas Tribune.

I certainly hope it is just a hoax. We have already seen two other cases of extortion demands involving medical databases – the Express Scripts case and the Virginia prescription database case. Neither case has resulted in any arrest yet.

Hat-tip, iHealthBeat

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