Security Firm COO Charged in Attack on Medical Center

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The chief operating officer of a network security firm serving the healthcare sector has been charged by federal prosecutors with alleged crimes stemming from a cyberattack on an Atlanta, Georgia-area medical center in 2018. Some experts say the unusual case offers forewarnings to others. The Department of Justice in a statement Thursday said Vikas Singla, the COO of a metro-Atlanta network security company that served the healthcare industry, allegedly conducted a cyberattack in 2018 on Gwinnett Medical Center. The medical center has since been renamed Northside Hospital System, operating several hospitals, including Northside Hospital-Gwinnett. Singla was charged in a Georgia federal court Thursday with 17 counts of intentional damage to a protected computer, each of which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years’ imprisonment; and one count of obtaining information by computer from a protected computer, which carries a maximum penalty of five years’ imprisonment, the Justice Department says.

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