news   |   crime & courts

Unknown source holds Bloomington business’ files hostage in exchange for bitcoins



A Bloomington business was forced to pay roughly $10,000 in bitcoins after its computer files were held hostage by an unknown source. 

Bloomington Police Department Lt. John Kovach said MedPro Services, a medical billing company, reported the ransomware attack to police Wednesday, more than a week after the incident occurred. A MedPro Services employee told the Indiana Daily Student in an email the company reported the incident to the FBI within hours after the attack. The police report was filed for insurance purposes.

Kovach said a MedPro Services employee logged onto her company computer Oct. 27 and noticed some of the files on it were encrypted. The next day, the employee logged onto her computer again and received a message stating all of her files had been encrypted by an unknown source. 

The message demanded .45 bitcoin, worth roughly $4,000, in exchange for a password that would allow her to access her files again, Kovach said. MedPro Services contacted its insurance company and decided to pay the money. Kovach said the company ended up paying 1.5 bitcoins or roughly $10,000 in order to access the files. 

Kovach said the hacker or hackers likely gained access to MedPro Services’ files through email.

This story has been updated.

Like what you're reading? Support independent, award-winning college journalism on this site. Donate here.

More in News



Comments powered by Disqus