Major cyber attack makes UK hospital system cancel surgeries and emergency services

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The National Health Service(NHS) Lincolnshire and Goole Trust based in the UK had to cancel surgeries and divert trauma patients to other facilities after an electronic virus crippled its entire electronics system early this week.

According to a press release displayed on NHS web page, a computer virus succeeded in pulling down the entire hospital network system on Sunday I.s October 30,2016. As a result, the hospital authorities on the advice of experts decided to shut down the majority of systems so that they can isolate the malware and destroy it.

As a result of this procedure, all planned operations, outpatient appointments and diagnostic procedures were canceled on Wednesday, Nov. 2 with a small number of exceptions.

Although there is no information on the virus which infected the system, a source close to the board reports that it was a kind of ransomware.

A ransomware is kind of malware which creeps into the server systems and starts besieging the data. As a result of this process, the data cannot be accessed from the servers. If the business or organizations need to get rid of this malware, then they need to pay a ransom usually in digital currency format like bitcoins where the address of the account holder remains anonymous.

In a similar incident which happened early in March this year, Henderson, KY-based “ Methodist Hospital” shut down its computer systems due to a serious cyber attack. In another cyber security incident, a California hospital which had its electronic systems besieged with ransomware had to pay $17,000 as ransom to get out the menace.

According to media resources, the cyber attack carried on NHS could have been a kind of retaliation to the newly unveiled National Cybersecurity Strategy revealed on a recent note by UK Chancellor Philip Hammond.

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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