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HSE Goes Offline To Prevent Cyber Attack

HSE Goes Offline To Prevent Cyber Attack

Scotland's Health Secretary Shona Robison meanwhile said there was "a level of confidence" that GP systems would run as normal on Monday, and that any lessons from the cyber attack on NHS computer systems will be learned.

It's a piece of malicious software that encrypts files on a user's computer, blocking them from view and threatening to delete them unless a payment is made. It warns that the ransom demand will double after three days and that after seven days, "you won't be able to recover your files forever". It is available in at least 28 languages, including Bulgarian and Vietnamese, according to Avast, a Czech security company that is following the fast-moving attack. Some regional NHS trusts said they had cancelled cancer and outpatient appointments scheduled for the weekend.

Its ransom demands start at $300 and increase after two hours to $400, $500 and then $600, said Kurt Baumgartner, a security researcher at Kaspersky Lab.

East and North Hertfordshire NHS said its phone system couldn't accept incoming calls after the attack, and it had postponed "all non-urgent activity".

"Then the kill switch was pulled and everything went live".

The security holes it exploits were disclosed several weeks ago by TheShadowBrokers, a mysterious group that has repeatedly published what it says are hacking tools used by the National Secury Agency as part of its intelligence-gathering. Here's everything you need to know about the cyber attack.

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Kasperksy's Baumgartner did note that although the ransomware was able to offer "how to pay" documents in dozens of languages, the only language whose writing was ideal was Russian, with the others showing distinct signs that a non-native speaker had written them. But computers and networks that hadn't updated their systems were still at risk. "Customers running Windows 10 were not targeted by the attack".

As similar widespread ransomware attacks were reported in Spain, Romania and elsewhere, experts warned that online extortion attempts by hackers are a growing menace.

"The attack is a ransomware or cryptolocker type event, a relatively common low-level form of cyber attack usually aimed at extorting relatively small sums of money", the spokesperson said.

Patients have reported being turned away, while some are stuck at hospital without access to discharge data. "We will continue to work with affected organizations to confirm this".

NHS Digital said the attack "was not specifically targeted at the NHS and is affecting organizations from across a range of sectors".

A spokesman for the Russian Health Ministry, Nikita Odintsov, said on Twitter that the cyberattacks on his ministry were "effectively repelled".

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The malware used is called Wanna Decryptor.

Critically ill patients were diverted to unaffected hospitals as computer systems failed in accident and emergency units, The Times reported. The NHS Merseyside website was down Friday afternoon local time.

"Our priority is to ensure that boards get all the support required to identify the full extent of any problems, and return IT systems to normal as soon as possible, so there is as little impact on patient care as possible".

Doctors were left unable to access test results and patient records. "Our patients are being very understanding so far". People in affected areas were being advised to seek medical care only in emergencies.

We just don't understand the mentality of some people.

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