UHS Data Breach Lawsuit Proceeds
American healthcare provider Universal Health Services (UHS) is facing a lawsuit filed in 2020 over a data breach. The suit will proceed, but only for one of the affected patients, Stephen Motkowicz, who claims that his surgery was canceled as a result of a ransomware attack and subsequent data breach at the UHS. UHS operated in the UK, Puerto Rico, and the US, boasting 90,000 employees and 400 care centers across the three entities. Sensitive data pertaining to the organization was exfiltrated in September of last year after the Ryuk ransomware gang launched a cyberattack against UHS.
All UHS sites in Puerto Rico and the US were affected by the cyberattack, and the company’s IT systems were forced to go offline for roughly a month. Some scheduled appointments were also postponed due to the incident. The attack cost UHS $67 million in downtime and related security expenses. Claims made by two plaintiffs who claimed that the data breach made them vulnerable to fraud identity theft were dismissed. Motkowicz had sufficient grievance to proceed, however, because he was forced to take additional time off work after his surgery was delayed. The time off also caused Motkowicz to lose his health insurance through his employer.
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