A man from Georgia was arraigned today on charges arising from a cyberattack on Gwinnett Medical Center in 2018.
The indictment says Vikas Singla, 45, of Marietta, chief operating officer of an Atlanta metro network security company that served the healthcare industry, carried out a cyberattack on the Gwinnett Medical Center which involved (i) disrupting telephone service, (ii) obtaining information from a scanning device, and (iii) disrupting network printer service. The indictment further alleges that the cyberattack was carried out, in part, for financial gain.
“Criminal disruption of hospital computer networks can have tragic consequences,” said Acting Deputy Attorney General Nicholas L. McQuaid of the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice. “The ministry is committed to holding accountable those who put the lives of patients at risk by damaging the computers that are essential to the functioning of our healthcare system.
“Cyber attacks that target critical infrastructure, such as healthcare, pose a serious threat to public health and safety,” said Acting US Attorney Kurt R. Erskine for the Northern District of Georgia. “In this case, Singla would have compromised the operations of Gwinnett Medical Center in part for her own personal gain.”
“This cyberattack on a hospital could not only have had dire consequences, but the personal information of patients was also compromised,” said Special Agent in Charge Chris Hacker of the FBI Field Office in Atlanta. “The FBI and our law enforcement partners are determined to hold accountable those who put the health and safety of people at risk while motivated by greed.”
Singla was indicted on Tuesday by a federal grand jury and appeared today before U.S. judge Linda T. Walker of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. The accused is charged with 17 counts of willful damage to a protected computer, each carrying a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, and one count of obtaining information by computer from a computer protected, punishable by a maximum penalty of five years. imprisonment. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering US sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors.
The FBI is investigating this case.
Trial lawyer Brian Mund of the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section of the Criminal Division and Deputy US Attorney Samir Kaushal for the Northern District of Georgia and are continuing the case.
An indictment is only an allegation and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in court.