Virginia DHP Urges Caution After Hacker Claims of Data Breach
As Virginia DHP officials await the completion of an investigation into reports of a massive data breach affecting 8 million records from the Virginia Prescription Monitoring Program, people are urged to be vigilant for signs of identity theft. On April 30, a message demanding a $10 million ransom for the data was posted on the Prescription Monitoring Program's Website.While law enforcement officials investigate reports of a data breach, the Virginia Department of Health Professions are urging anyone who could be affected to watch vigilantly for signs of identity theft for the next 12 to 24 months. On April 30, the Website of the DHP's Prescription Monitoring Program was defaced with a message stating more than 8 million patient records had been stolen and were being kept in an encrypted, password-protected file. The message demanded that the state pay $10 million to get access to the data, which the hacker or hackers claimed to have deleted from the state's repositories.
In a statement, however, DHP Director Sandra Whitley Ryals refuted claims that the records had been deleted. All the data was backed up and is secured, she said.