MO: Saint Francis Healthcare announces ransomware incident involving Ferguson Medical Group; not all records recovered

Updated Nov. 21:  This incident has just been posted on HHS’s public breach tool as impacting 107,054 patients.

Original Post:

Marsha Heller of KAIT 8 reports that Saint Francis Healthcare System announced that Ferguson Medical Group (FMG) in Sikeston, Mo. was hit with a ransomware attack on September 20th.

The following is the notice on Saint Francis Healthcare’s site, explaining that not all records were recoverable from backup:

Notice of Cyber Attack at Ferguson Medical Group

On September 21, 2019, Saint Francis became aware that the computer network that Ferguson Medical Group, LP (FMG) utilized prior to being acquired by Saint Francis Medical Center experienced a cyber attack on September 20, 2019. As a result of that attack, all of the medical records for services provided at FMG prior to January 1, 2019, were made inaccessible to Saint Francis and they were asked to pay a ransom to regain access to the records. Saint Francis took immediate steps to secure the network and worked with federal law enforcement throughout that process.

Due to many uncertainties in these situations, Saint Francis did not pay a ransom to the attacker, but instead restored access to the medical records through available backup files; however, Saint Francis was not able to restore access to all of the impacted records. Any records for services provided at FMG between September 20, 2018, and December 31, 2018, as well as any documentation that had been scanned into the FMG system, regardless of date, were unable to be restored.

Saint Francis does not believe that this incident resulted in the disclosure of any patient information to any unauthorized third parties. While there is no indication that patient information has been or will be used inappropriately, Saint Francis is notifying all impacted individuals who can be identified and located and is advising them of precautionary steps they can take to protect themselves, including offering complimentary credit monitoring service. Information about how to enroll in the free credit monitoring is available in the letters mailed to patients or by calling the toll-free number Saint Francis established for this matter.

Saint Francis regrets that this incident occurred and is committed to providing quality care and safeguarding personal information. Saint Francis has established a call center to answer any questions that patients may have about this incident. Individuals may contact the call center at 866-611-1186 between 8 am and 8 pm Central time, Monday through Friday.




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