9 hospitals and health centres targeted in wave of cyber attacks

News / 9 hospitals and health centres targeted in wave of cyber attacks

9 hospitals and health centres targeted in wave of cyber attacks

The Israeli Ministry of Health and National Cyber Directorate announced that a series of 9 cyber attacks on hospitals and health institutes were thwarted over the weekend. Early detection and a quick response from the directorate and staff on the ground halted the attempts and luckily there was no significant damage. The types of cyber attacks attempted and who was behind them are yet to be identified.

Following the attempted attack, hospitals were instructed to ensure that they have data backups separate from hospital networks as well as paper copies of critical information. 

The National Cyber Directorate has stated that they are trying to strengthen the level of cyber protection and identify new vulnerabilities in the health sector. The attempted cyber attacks came after the Hillel Yaffe Medical Centre in Hadera was the victim of a major ransomware attack last week that crippled systems and could take months to recover from. An Israeli cyber security firm has stated that the Israeli medical sector is subject to roughly 1,400 cyber attacks every week - twice more than the average global rate of similar attacks.

Israeli cyber officials have asked the countries taking part in meetings about cyber attacks, being held in Washington, to exchange information about such attacks with Israel.

Last week, the National Cyber Directorate issued a general warning to Israeli businesses to be aware of potential cyber attacks, as the country is facing an increase in attempted hacks. New data released in a report on Thursday suggested that Israel is more affected by ransomware than any country since 2020. 

In recent years Israel's trade and medical firms and other vital facilities have been subject to repetitive cyber attacks. Israel accuses Iran of a lot of these attacks; however one cyber security firm in Israel has stated that it is not only Iran that carries out such attacks for espionage or the purpose of harming computer systems. All major world powers take part in such attacks so ruling out who is responsible always takes time.

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