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Why hackers target medical records

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There are many reasons as to why hackers target medical records. This is why it’s so important for organisations to protect private and sensitive healthcare information, and justice for victims when they are misused or exposed is equally as important.

Claims for compensation for medical records data breaches are some of the  most serious that we deal with. We represent thousands of clients for cases as a leading firm of data breach lawyers, so we can tell you this from considerable experience.

Here is our insight into why hackers target this kind of information, and what victims can do when data is misused or exposed.

Why hackers target medical records

The reason as to why hackers target medical records is simple: they usually contain valuable information. There are also many methods that criminals can use to exploit exposed data as well to be able to make a profit from it, which is usually what it’s all about.

The impact for a victim if private and sensitive healthcare data is exposed can be substantial. As such, data breach compensation amounts for victims can be high, as can the fines that the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) may issue. For this reason, it can be cheaper for healthcare organisations to pay a bribe if data has been stolen. If ransomware has exposed the information, it may also be cheaper to pay the ransom rather than face the consequences of a compensation action too.

If ransomware locks healthcare professionals and staff out of their systems, and medical records cannot be accessed, patients’ health – and even their lives – could be in danger. This is another reason it makes sense to pay a ransom. Given how serious the consequences can be, ransoms and bribe amounts can be set quite high as the criminals know that there is a decent chance of being paid.

What can victims do if records are exposed?

Now you know why hackers target medical records, what are the rights of victims when healthcare information is misused or exposed?

if more could – and should – have been done by the organisation that was hit by the cyberattack, they could be held liable for the data breach. If they are liable and have been negligent in how the breach occurred, victims whose information has been involved could be eligible to claim data breach compensation.

Victims can be entitled to claim for the distress caused by the loss of control of their personal information. You do not have to have incurred expenses or lost money to claim, as the GDPR can allow you to claim for just the distress.

Given how personal and sensitive healthcare data is, pay-outs can be substantial for medical data breach compensation cases. This kind of information is exactly the sort that most people want to maintain control over, so the distress that victims can suffer from can be huge. This element, as referenced above, is a key reason as to why hackers target medical records.

Where to go for advice

If you have been the victim of a healthcare data breach, you could be entitled to claim compensation with our team. We may also be able to represent you for a legal case on a No Win, No Fee basis.

For free and no-obligation advice, please don’t hesitate to contact our team today.

IMPORTANT: advice on this page is intended to be up-to-date for the 'first published date'.

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