Earlier this month, a Los Angeles hospital fell victim of a huge cyberattack. California's Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center was hit by a ransomware, a malicious software program that locks down computer networks and holds them hostage until a decryption key is paid for.
As Allen Stefanek, president and chief executive of Hollywood Presbyterian, announced the malware problem began on Feb. 5, and the quickest and most efficient way to restore their systems and files was to pay the ransom.
Subsequently, in order to regain access and admnistrative fuctions the hospital was forced to pay the amount of 40 Bitcoins, currently worth $16,664 dollars, to the hackers.
FBI is currently investigating the extortion plot, but it hasn't provided any further details yet.
Hospital's network is in full operation again and as Mr. Allen Stefanek stated patient care was not affected by the hacking, and there is no evidence any patient data was compromised.
The issue has raised awareness around the planet to increase cyber security in hospitals. Malware and ransomware attacks are on the rise in many industries, but many security researchers are claiming that the rate at which attacks on hospitals has grown during the past year is unparalleled.