Mary Black Health System affected by cyberattack - FOX Carolina 21

Mary Black Health System affected by cyberattack

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Mary Black Health System said it was affected by the Community Health Systems breach. (File/FOX Carolina) Mary Black Health System said it was affected by the Community Health Systems breach. (File/FOX Carolina)
SPARTANBURG, SC (AP/FOX Carolina) -

Patients of Mary Black Health System in Spartanburg have been affected by a cyberattack that took information from more than 4 million patients from the hospital operator Community Health Systems.

The Franklin, TN-based company said Monday that no medical or credit card records were taken in the attack, which may have happened in April and June. But Community said the attack did bypass its security systems to take patient names, addresses, birthdates, and phone and Social Security numbers.

The hospital operator said it believes the attack came from a group in China that used sophisticated malware and technology to get the information. Community Health has since removed the malware from its system and finalized "other remediation efforts" to prevent future attacks.

Mary Black Health System released the following statement on Monday:

"Limited personal identification data belonging to some patients who were seen at physician practices and clinics affiliated with Mary Black Health System over the past five years was transferred out of our organization in a criminal cyber attack by a foreign-based intruder. The transferred information did not include any medical information or credit card information, but it did include names, addresses, birthdates, telephone numbers and social security numbers.

We take very seriously the security and confidentiality of private patient information and we sincerely regret any concern or inconvenience to patients. Though we have no reason to believe that this data would ever be used, all affected patients are being notified by letter and offered free identity theft protection.

Our organization believes the intruder was a foreign-based group out of China that was likely looking for intellectual property. The intruder used highly sophisticated methods to bypass security systems. The intruder has been eradicated and applications have been deployed to protect against future attacks. We are working with federal law enforcement authorities in their investigation and will support prosecution of those responsible for this attack."

Copyright 2013 FOX Carolina (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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