Technology

Czech hospital hit by COVID-19 epidemic cyber attack

The Brno University Hospital in the city of Brno in the Czech Republic was hit by a cyber attack in the middle of the COVID-19 epidemic. An epidemic that is also growing in this central European country.

Hospital officials have not disclosed the nature of the problem. However, the incident was deemed serious enough to postpone surgical procedures and redirect new patients to the nearby Saint Anne University Hospital, local media reported. [1, 2, 3, 4].

The hospital was forced to shut down its entire computer network during the incident, and two other branches of the hospital, the children’s hospital and the maternity ward, were also affected. The infection was discovered around 5 a.m. local time on Thursday. Peter Gramatik, a hospital patient, and a security researcher from Sucuri informed by email on Friday.

The hospital’s public address system displayed the message that all personnel should immediately shut down all computers for “cyber security” reasons, “Gramatik told us.” This message was repeated every the 30 minutes “.

“At around 8:00 am there was another announcement that all operations were canceled,” said Gramatik, who was then sent home. Following the incident, teams from the Czech National Cyber ​​Security Center (NCSC), and the Czech police (NCOZ) and hospital IT staff are working together to restart the computer network. hospital.

The hospital is a COVID-19 test center

The incident is considered serious and treated with the utmost urgency as the Brno University Hospital is one of the largest COVID-19 test laboratories in the Czech Republic. It is not known at this time, however, whether the hospital’s ability to test the Coronavirus has been affected, even temporarily, by the cyber attack.

According to the latest statistics, 117 infections have been confirmed in the Czech Republic, as the extremely viral disease appears to be starting to spread across the country, and the hospital’s testing capabilities are badly needed at this time.

“In times of crisis, hackers see opportunities,” said Flavius ​​Plesu, founder and CEO of the specialized company OutThink, to . “In times of risk, security teams must be especially vigilant and understand that the risk of a cyber attack is much higher than usual, as hackers try to take advantage of tired and overworked staff to act.”

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