Irish Health Cyber ​​Attack Could Have Been Even Worse, Report Says

An independent report on a cyberattack on Ireland’s health service in May found the impact could have been even worse than it actually was. The ransomware blocked employees’ access to their computer systems and “seriously” interfered with medical care in the country.

But the report says it would be worse if the data were destroyed or the Covid-19 vaccination systems or specific medical devices were affected.

He added that the attack had a “much stronger” impact than originally anticipated. A PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) report commissioned by a healthcare executive found that systems remain vulnerable to even more serious attacks in the future. As cybersecurity experts found out, Irish technology systems were fragile and several opportunities to spot red flags were missed.

The attackers demanded payment for restoring access to computer systems, and it took four months to fully restore the service.

On March 18th, someone at the Health Office of Ireland (HSE) opened a spreadsheet that had been sent to him two days earlier. But the file has been compromised by malware.

For the next two months, the criminal group behind this letter made their way through the networks. There were several warning signs that they were working, but no investigation was launched, meaning that a critical opportunity to intervene was missed, according to the report.

Then, at 01:00 BST on Friday, May 14, the ransomware was launched by the criminals. The blow was devastating. Pen and paper More than 80% of IT infrastructure was affected, resulting in loss of patient information and basic diagnoses, severely impacting healthcare and healthcare delivery.

The HSE University employs about 130,000 people who provide medical and social assistance to five million Irish citizens. But all of the computer systems were out of order. Doctors, nurses and other workers have lost access to patient information systems, clinical care, and laboratories. The email went away and the staff had to resort to pencil and paper.

Lab test data had to be handwritten and manually entered, with an increased risk of errors. Medical care was interrupted for thousands of people. A general practitioner received a phone call from a consulting surgeon asking about the whereabouts of a patient who was about to have surgery when that person had already been operated on, according to the report.

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