The director of Yuma-based PrimeCare Urgent Care said this week that no patient data was compromised during a mid-April cyber attack on its computer system, and has begun the process of notifying customers.  

Erin Knowles, PrimeCare executive director, said the attack occurred April 11-12, and froze the practice out of its own server. 

“Basically all they did was put on a lock, I would call it, on stuff, so we couldn’t access it at all,” Knowles said. 

“We shut down the servers as soon as it happened, and we brought in a guy from California to work on it before it went any further,” since then. 

She said the company had just received the final report from the investigation of the incident, concluding no data about patients or any other part of the business had been accessed. 

“No information was breached because we do have a firewall and we have all of the anti-virus stuff on the server,” she said.

PrimeCare has begun mailing letters out to current patients, and handing out notices to returning patients who come in to the three centers. 

The incident has been reported to the FBI and other agencies involved in investigating cybercrime, she said, and PrimeCare is within established protocols in which customers are notified of any kind of attack within 60 days. 

Knowles said, “We have nothing to hide, we wanted to make sure we had everything in place in order to answer correctly.

I don’t want to give false information to any patient so I’d rather know what we’re dealing with before I say anything.

“We don’t want to freak people out,” she said. 

PrimeCare’s three locations, two in Yuma and one in the Foothills, have been “running on paper” since the attack happened, Knowles said, which has caused some delays and staff is currently being trained on using its new cloud-based electronic medical record system. 

She said, “Our contract with the current thing is up in about three months so there’s no point in reinstalling that service. We might as well move to something that’s cloud-based so we don’t have to worry about threats any more. We don’t want to go through this again.”

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