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Had a facelift? Harley Medical hackers have nabbed your personal details

James Temperton
16 Apr 2014
Harley Medical
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Details of 500,000 Harley Medical customers have been stolen by hackers who then tried to extort money from the cosmetic surgery company

Details of 500,000 Harley Medical customers have been stolen by hackers with the cosmetic surgery practice admitting names, home addresses, telephone numbers and dates of birth had all been snatched.

In an email sent to its patients Harley Medical Group said that hackers had "deliberately bypassed" website security and gained access to information from "initial website enquiries". Harley stressed that no clinical or financial information had been stolen.

Harley said it had contacted the police and taken down its website to fix the security flaw that had given hackers access to the database of customer information. As well as customer information, the data stolen also included the procedures people were inquiring about.

The cosmetic surgery practice, famed for tummy tucks and breast enlargements, apologised for customers for the data breach and said it had acted "immediately" to deal with the situation.

A spokesperson for the company explained that hackers who stole the information then attempted to extort money from the company.

Pete Boddy, chairman of Harley Medical issued a personal apology to affected patients:

"I am sorry that the contact information that you provided in your initial enquiry via our website has been accessed in this way. I hope you will recognise that we have acted swiftly and transparently to deal with this situation."

The Information Commissioner's Office confirmed that it was looking into the data breach.

"We will be making inquiries into the circumstances of the alleged breach of the Data Protection Act before deciding what action, if any, needs to be taken," the ICO said in a statement.

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