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Trust behind Princess Royal University Hospital confirms it did not suffer NHS cyber attack

PUBLISHED: 09:47 15 May 2017 | UPDATED: 12:57 17 May 2017

Princess Royal University Hospital, Farnborough

Princess Royal University Hospital, Farnborough

Archant

The attack impacted services up and down the country

Patients using Princess Royal University Hospital were unaffected by the cyber attack which swept across the NHS last week.

The attack on Friday saw ambulances diverted and operations cancelled up and down the country.

Kings College NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the Farnborough hospital, escaped the first wave of the attack on Friday, but fears had surfaced that more NHS services could be hit as workers returned on Monday morning.

However, this morning the trust confirmed it had not suffered from the attack, which also targeted the Russian Interior Ministry and Spanish telecoms giant, Telefonica, amongst other global organisations.

A spokesperson for the trust said: “Our systems and services were not affected by the recent cyber-attack.

“The NHS has well-established systems for trusts to support each other in situations like this, and we are grateful to staff who worked hard to ensure we could offer a joined-up response to patients from London and the surrounding areas.

“The public can help us at this busy time by choosing alternatives to A&E, such as pharmacy services and NHS 111, if they have non-life threatening conditions.

Pictures posted on social media showed screens of NHS computers with images demanding payment of 300 US dollars worth of the online currency Bitcoin, threatening to delete files within seven days.

A malware called Wanna Decryptor was used in the attack, which encrypts files on a user’s computer, blocking them from view.

The virus is usually covertly installed on to computers by hiding within innocent-looking emails containing links, which users are tricked into opening.

A spokesman for NHS Digital, which manages health service cyber security, said: “At this stage, we do not have any evidence that patient data has been accessed.”

Bromley Clinical Commissioning Group, which buys and plans most of the borough’s healthcare services, issued advice to patients following the attack.

A spokesperson said: “The recent cyber-attack has had very limited impact on health services in Bromley and the CCG is reassuring everyone that all checks of systems have been completed and these are all currently fine. There is no evidence that patient data has been accessed or patient records affected.

“All GP practices are running as normal and are being supported to review security of their IT systems, you can continue to make appointments with your GP and should keep your hospital or GP appointment unless told not to go.

“Please use the NHS wisely and use pharmacists for minor ailments and conditions and be patient with NHS staff as computer systems may be running slower than usual at the moment.”

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