Northern Light Health: Patient records not compromised in hack

A spokesperson with Northern Light Health said much of the information circulating online about the incident is “incorrect.”

BANGOR, Maine — Northern Light Health took its patient records system offline Saturday after officials with the health care system learned several computer servers that support all hospitals within the network were compromised. 

Patricia Patterson King, a spokesperson with Northern Light Health, confirmed in an email to NEWS CENTER Maine that several servers were compromised Saturday afternoon, but the servers that were compromised did not contain patient information. The hack prompted officials to decide to take servers with patient information offline in an effort to further protect privacy.

King said a lot of information about the situation was circulating online Saturday, but she said much of it “incorrect” and listed several clarifications in the email in an effort to dispel several of the myths. 

“At this time, we have no reason to believe any of our patient information has been compromised,” King said in the email. 

King also clarified that Northern Light Health has full control of HVAC and security systems. Further, she said, they had not been contacted by a third party and added there was “no indication that any of our information is being held for ransom.” 

The health care system said it contacted “appropriate authorities” about the incident but did not provide specifics in the email. 

“We will share more information with our patients, staff, and communities as it becomes available. In the meantime, we remain at the ready to deliver great care,” King said. 

Suzanne Spruce, senior VP of Northern Light Health and chief marketing and communications officer, spoke with NEWS CENTER Maine Saturday evening to further explain the situation. 

Spruce reiterated that none of the compromised servers contained patient information and that patient care was not affected. She also said staff at Northern Light continually train for downtime procedures, meaning they switch from digital records to print. 

Spruce also said that it was a “matter of hours” between the discovery of the compromised system and when the downtime mode was activated.  

“We discovered an abnormality in our systems. We looked at it, and out of an abundance of caution decided to take our servers down,” she said. 

Northern Light Health is made up of 10 member hospitals and employs more than 10,000 people in Maine, with locations from “Portland to Presque Isle and from Blue Hill to Greenville,” according to its website. Northern Light Health touts itself as the only integrated health care system in the state. 

This afternoon, Northern Light Health discovered that some of our computer servers had been compromised. While none of…

Posted by Northern Light Acadia Hospital on Saturday, February 3, 2024

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