LifeLabs had to pay hackers an undisclosed amount following a data breach. The leading clinical laboratory of Canada revealed that the data breach exposed the personal information of up to its 15 million customers. The breach took place last month after an unauthorized user accessed their systems. The laboratory has admitted paying hackers ransom money to retrieve the data. CEO of LifeLabs Charles Brown has apologized for the breach that exposed the personal information of customers stored on their systems. “I want to personally apologize for what has happened. As we are trying to deal with this issue, my team members and I am working in the best interests of our loyal customers. We take the responsibility of securing important health information of customers,” Brown said.
According to a press release of the company, it collaborated with experts familiar with cybercriminals to pay the ransom money to hackers. However, the exact amount paid by the company to recover its data is unclear. The information accessed by the hackers included details like names, dates of birth, addresses, logins, emails, passwords, and health card numbers. Lab test results of approximately 85,000 customers also got exposed to the data breach. A large number of customers whose data were exposed are from Ontario and BC. The data accessed by the hackers were reportedly from 2016 and earlier. According to the documents filed by the company, the breach took place around November 1.
LifeLabs said that after accessing the data, hackers demanded a ransom to give it back. The company is currently working with law enforcement agencies to probe the hacking. It is also working on ways that can ensure future security and avoid further attacks. LifeLabs has now fixed its system for the entry point that was used by hackers to breach its servers. The laboratory is now offering a free subscription of dark web monitor for one year to concerned customers. Customers using the same password for LifeLabs account at other sites have been advised to change it immediately. It is the biggest lab testing company in Canada and operates 34 percent of the labs in the province.