The owners of the Miami Family Medical Centre on the Gold Coast fear they may have to pay $4000 to the extortionists, who hacked into a server and encrypted the medical records.
"We're trying to work out how to pay the hackers or find someone to decrypt the information," the centre's co-owner David Wood told ABC Online on Monday.
He said the information hadn't been stolen and the centre would continue to operate, but admitted it would be very difficult without patient records.
There have been 11 similar offences in Queensland this year, according to police.
This kind of thing is no longer a novelty item; soon it won't even be news.Except in the real world hackers aren't cool nerds or sexy high-functioning autistics. They're just thugs with computers instead of crowbars.
Meanwhile, everyone needs to keep backups. We keep our writing backups on Amazon's cloud; it costs a few dollars a month and you can upload from Firefox. But if you have a business, you need to have your data on physical media, somewhere in your building.