NHS cyberattack – the need for proactive methods to be implemented to avoid these situations in the future


The UK’s NHS 111 emergency services has been affected by a significant and ongoing outage triggered by a cyberattack. This attack on Adastra’s client patient management solutions, which is used by 81% of NHS 111 services, is yet another example of the unprecedented increase in cyberattacks targeting the IT systems of healthcare organisations. Adastra, who suffered a loss of service, has taken the responsible precautionary measure of isolating all their health and care environments – containing the attack and segmenting critical services and data should be a top priority in the event of a cyber-attack.

Sadly, cyberattacks like this one that threaten the delivery of critical services will be an ordeal we continue to read about. After NotPetya and WannaCry many organisations upgraded their protection with the latest detection and response technology. However, ransomware gangs are getting better at evading these methods and so, a Zero Trust, assume breach mindset is needed to truly protect against these attacks. By only allowing known and verified communication between environments, security teams can contain an attack on the IT systems and reduce the impact on operational processes of any business.