NHS systems returning to normal after cyber attack

Posted May 19, 2017

A statement issued on social media said: "Patients who do attend for their appointments are asked to bear with our staff, as some imaging and results may not be immediately available and systems are running slowly in some areas".

NHS computer systems are returning to normal after the ransomware cyber attack, health secretary Shona Robison has said.

'There has been one incident of the ransomware hitting a business here in Australia and there could be two other incidents where it has occurred although we are trying to confirm that, ' he said. The organization that oversees United Kingdom hospital cybersecurity said that last month it alerted the trusts about the Windows vulnerabilities and sent a patch to fix it.

It was not yet known who perpetrated Friday's attacks.

In what one of the most significant cyberattacks ever recorded, computer systems from the U.K.to Russia, Brazil and the USA were hit beginning Friday by malicious software that exploited a vulnerability in Microsoft's Windows operating system.

The assault, which began Friday and was being described as the biggest-ever cyber ransom attack, struck state agencies and major companies around the world - from Russian banks and British hospitals to FedEx and European auto factories.

The number of infections has fallen dramatically since Friday's peak when more than 9,000 computers were being hit per hour.

Worldwide investigators hunted Saturday for those behind an unprecedented cyber-attack that affected systems in dozens of countries, including at banks, hospitals and government agencies, as security experts sought to contain the fallout. Ransomware encrypts a victim's data and will only provide a key for access upon the payment of ransom.

"In particular, making sure that our data is properly backed up and making sure that we are using the software patches, the anti-virus patches, that are sent out regularly by manufacturers".

"Services provided by GP practices will continue and patient appointments are not affected".

'There have also been other reports made to our online cyber security network and the difficulty is of course there are literally hundres of instances of ransomware in Australia each week and so we are now seeking to confirm whether these are examples of the particular ransomware that has cause so much havoc for example in the United Kingdom'.

In Britain, the National Cyber Security Center said it is "working round the clock" with experts to restore vital health services.

In Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said late Sunday that his country was largely unaffected by the ransomware attack after it began preparing for such events several years ago through its new National Cyberdefence Authority.

In Russia, government agencies insisted that all attacks had been resolved.

However, officials and security firms in China said the spread was starting to slow.

Instead of developing hacking tools in secret and holding them for use against adversaries, governments and intelligence agencies should share weaknesses they find with Microsoft and other software makers so that vulnerabilities can be repaired.