HSE cyberattack: 82% of servers now decrypted 

HSE cyberattack: 82% of servers now decrypted 

The May cyberhack resulted in more than 85,000 computers being shut down in an attempt to contain the attack.

Around 82% of HSE servers have been decrypted since the cyberattack in May, the HSE’s chief operations officer has said.

The May cyberhack resulted in more than 85,000 computers being shut down in an attempt to contain the attack.

The attack compromised the HSE’s entire system, resulting in knock-on effects on services, equipment, and access to patient records.

The HSE has been working since then to restore their systems, prioritising those which are “most critical” to patient care.

HSE chief operations officer Dr Anne O’Connor said they are seeing “ongoing improvement” in terms of restoring systems.

Some 82% of servers had been decrypted, while 83% of end-user devices have been connected, she said.

“We now have all sites with functioning applications for patient management services and that’s a really important milestone for us, in terms of all sites having that critical information available,” she added.

“In terms of our diagnostic imaging, where we had very significant challenges, we have 55 sites now functioning and three sites with a limited level of functioning.” 

However, she said the HSE was “still challenged” in endoscopy, with 19 sites having a limited level of functioning.

“We are able to carry out those procedures, but there are challenges in some of the systems around them.”

In community services, the HSE has restored nearly all of the applications, Dr O’Connor added.

“We are back to having really significant access again. It’s very positive on the community front. Still some challenges in terms of our email. We’re not back to business as usual yet, the integration isn’t quite there yet.” 

On Monday, the first legal case over the release of sensitive medical information on the dark web as part of the HSE cyber hack was lodged at Cork Circuit Court.

The case was lodged against Mercy University Hospital (MUH) by a Cork solicitor acting on behalf of a middle-aged family man who received treatment there for cancer.

Paul Reid, chief executive of the HSE, said they were aware of that case but was not aware, at the current point in time, of any other legal proceedings being taken as a result of the hack.

Mr Reid added that the HSE had secured an injunction to stop personal and medical information that may have been stolen in this cyber attack from being shared, sold or published online.

Mr Reid has previously said that the cost of the attack could rise to €500,000m due to significant capital costs.

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