Irish Health Service Executive shortly denoted as HSE is trending on Google news headlines for using an outdated version of over 30,000 computers in server farms and that includes most of them running on the old and obsolete Windows 7 operating that is no longer supported by Microsoft by any chance.
In May this year, the health services provider suffered a massive cyber attack that resulted in disruption of services for weeks and incurring losses close to €100 million.
A detailed investigation launched by Oireachtas Committee of Ireland has revealed that the Cybersecurity posture of the state funded healthcare agency hasn’t improved yet as the senior management is still showing a blind eye towards the improvement of IT Infrastructure due to lack of budget and other reasons.
HSE released a press statement against the news published in various news resources and clarified that it cannot go for an upgrade of its systems from Windows 7 to Windows 10 in near time, as all of its health related equipment like X-ray machines and lab diagnostics infrastructure are linked to them and the overhaul of the whole hardware and software needs sanction of humongous budget that might take place early next year.
Second is the news related to a cyber attack that took place in Port of Houston last month. It’s reported that a critical vulnerability in the password management program of the port of East Coast led to a cyber incident that is deeply under probe now.
News is out that the port authorities successfully thwarted the Ransomware variant of cyber attack, thus neutralizing its effect on the infrastructure that could have paralyzed operations for weeks or sometimes months. And according to a probe conducted by CISA, a state funding actor is suspected to be behind the incident.
Third is news related to India and the government staff serving the Prime Minister Narender Modi led government. The security analysts from Cisco Talos have released a serious warning yesterday saying a hacking group named ‘Armor Piercer’ was operating with a motive of spreading malicious documents to government and military personnel serving Indian government and their intention was to conduct espionage, steal classical information and disrupt services.
The highlight of the story is that the alert from Cisco Talos came when the honorable minister Narender Modi left the nation on a three-day visit to United States to discuss certain issues with US President Joe Biden and his Deputy Kamala Harris.
Fourth is the news related to two eye care providers that is trending on Google from the past two days. Simon Eye Management has reported a data breach to the Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights and disclosed that an email hacking incident on its database could have led to the exposure of patient records of over 144,000 individuals.
In another incident, USV Optical Inc, a business unit of US Vision Inc reported similar data breach through a sophisticated cyber attack where hackers somehow managed to exfiltrate data of over 180,000 individuals.
Incidentally, both the two above stated data breaches occurred between April and May of this year, i.e. 2021, and reports are in that data related to eye care insurance, patient names, claims, DOBs were accessed by hackers.