Nuance says majority of clients back online after Petya cyberattack

Health 31 Jul 2017
Nuance says majority of clients back online after Petya cyberattack

Privacy & Security

Nuance says majority of clients back online after Petya cyberattack

Officials of the voice and language tool provider said 75 percent of its clients are once again able to use its eScription LH platform.

Nuance Communications has restored functionality for 75 percent of it eScription LH platform clients, the major voice and language tool provider announced on Friday.

It’s eScription RH and Clinic 360 platforms have been restored since July 3. Officials said the company is nearing the end of its restoration efforts.

Nuance was one of the U.S. companies hit hardest by the June 27 Petya/NotPetya malware attacks, which were masked as ransomware. In reality, the virus’ real intent was the disruption and destruction of data.

Officials also concluded that under HIPAA, the Petya attack is classified as a security incident and not a breach, as Petya was “not designed to give its perpetrator(s) any capability to control data on affected systems,” Nuance officials said in a blog post this week.

Further, the investigation found the virus wasn’t designed to let unauthorized parties view data on impacted networks nor designed to copy, control or extract data, officials said.

[Also: The biggest healthcare breaches of 2017 (so far)]

“The four-factor test set forth as part of the breach notification rule’s definition of ‘breach’ has led Nuance to conclude in good faith that there is a low probability that any PHI was compromised during the Incident for purposes of HIPAA and the breach notification rule,” officials said.

“As a precautionary measure, we shut down our networks, transcription platforms and other systems to halt the potential spread of the malware,” they added. “We’ve been conducting an extensive, around the clock, systems evaluation and restoration effort utilizing external consultants and internal IT teams.”

As part of the investigation, Nuance contacted the FBI and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

The company revealed last week that its earnings would be hurt by the incident, as it struggles to regain some of its services. Officials said it expects third quarter earnings of 26 cents to 28 cents a share, which is below the estimated 29 cents a share consensus from Thomas Reuters.

Further, the company forecasts an adjusted revenue of $494 million to $498 million, which is well below the estimated $510 million expected by analysts.

Nuance is just one of the many U.S. businesses impacted by the Petya attack. Biopharma giant Merck and Pennsylvania-based Heritage Valley Health System's network were also hit with the attack. And West Virginia’s Princeton Community Hospital had to replace its entire network after Petya.

FedEx has also admitted Petya has likely caused permanent damage, especially to its Ukrainian division of TNT Express. Officials said no data was stolen from the company’s network, but operations and communications were significantly affected.

Twitter: @JessieFDavis
Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com

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