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Hospital cyberattack under criminal investigation

Published on

Tara Jeffrey

Few details are being released about an ongoing cyberattack at Bluewater Health that is now part of a criminal investigation, officials say.

“Leading third-party cybersecurity experts have been engaged and we continue to investigate,” a statement noted, Friday. “We expect to have updates related to the restoration of our systems in the upcoming week.”

Bluewater Health is among a regional group of hospitals impacted by the cyberattack first reported as a ‘digital systems outage’ on Monday.

“Bluewater Health, Chatham Kent Health Alliance, Erie Shores HealthCare, Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare and Windsor Regional Hospital, along with our shared service provider TransForm Shared Service Organization, continue to work around the clock to restore systems following a recent cybersecurity incident,” the hospital group stated. “We understand the impact this incident is having on members of our community, including patients and our employees and professional staff, and deeply apologize for the inconvenience this has caused.

“We want to thank everyone for their patience during this time.”

Residents are being asked to “consider alternative community healthcare supports” and to attend their primary care provider or local clinic for any non-emergency needs.

Earlier this week, Bluewater Health issued a notice that the diagnostic imaging department was being “inundated with phone calls from the public.”

“If your appointment has been cancelled, the hospital will contact you directly,” the hospital stated. “We will also reach out to reschedule when we are able.”

According to a report from The Windsor Star, the attack is part of a scheme to extort money from the institutions.

“Due to the fact we have notified and engaged police as part of a criminal investigation we will not be providing further comment in response to this statement.”

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