A third-party vendor serving Virginia-based Sentara Healthcare suffered a cyberattack, resulting in the 12-hospital delivery system sending breach notification letters to approximately 5,454 affected patients.

Law enforcement informed Sentara of the breach on Nov. 17, 2016, and a Sentara investigation pinpointed the vendor, which it declined to identify in its announcement, as the target. Healthcare organizations often learn of cyberattacks as police in the course of investigating an incident find other facilities that also were affected. Police, Sentara and the vendor continue to investigate the incident, according to the notification letter.

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