FOX 11 - A large hospital in Hollywood has enlisted the FBI and the LAPD in it's fight against a cyber attack. Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center says they're in the midst of an "internal emergency."
The attack began last Friday. Hospital workers say the computers have been shut down after the hackers locked patient files in exchange for a ransom.
Melissa Garza is one of hundreds of patients still being treated at the hospital.
"I wasn’t feeling very well, went in for a checkup and they said they’re computers were down. I asked, what’s going on here and they said we were hacked," Garza said.
While the hospital says patient care hasn’t been compromised, they admit the hack has impacted their day-to-day operations causing some hold ups in the Emergency Room.
That's where Jeff Wilkinson says he was waiting with his daughter for hours.
"I’m surprised they didn’t tell us this," Wilkinson said regarding the attack. "Coming in [you'd think they would say] that there might be some delay because of it, I’m at a loss for words," Wilkinson said.
This hack attack is not a usual one. FOX 11's Christine O'Donnell wanted to know why hackers would target a hospital and how easy it would be. So, she took those questions to long-time computer forensics we took those questions to a computer forensics expert
Eric Robi has worked in computer forensics for 13 years.
"I don’t know why they chose a hospital specifically." Robi said. "Maybe they're thinking it’s a greater sense of urgency because it’s a hospital and the’ll get payed," Robi said.
Robi says he's worked half a dozen cyber attacks against LA businesses in the past year, but the ransom was no where near as high as it is at the Medical Center.
"The hackers have demanded, I think 9,000 bitcoin or so that’s a little over $3 Million," Robi said. It's an unfortunate hack, a ransomware hack where they're asking for money in exchange for unlocking records at the hospital," Robi said.
He says most of the time it's cheaper to pay the ransom than to pay to fix the problem.
"They're horrible, I know," Robi said.