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Concerns over Britain’s health service after global cyberattack

Nearly 100 countries are reported to have been targeted, with those responsible demanding a ransom to return encrypted information.

British Prime Minister Theresa May. Picture: Supplied

LONDON - There are growing fears that Britain’s national health service (NHS) is facing a chaotic weekend after being caught up in a global ransomware cyberattack.

Nearly 100 countries are reported to have been targeted, with those responsible demanding a ransom to return encrypted information.

While methods to stop the attack and decrypt data have been released, it's feared more countries, including South Africa, are at continued risk.

Operations and procedures at hospitals have affected by the cyberattack, which targeted dozens of NHS organisations.

Prime Minister Theresa May says there is no evidence to suggest sensitive patient information has been stolen.
“This was not targeted at the NHS, it was an international attack.”

The National Cyber Security Centre says it's working around the clock to deal with the attack, while there are already calls for upgrades to the NHS systems.

On Friday, cyber extortionists tricked victims into opening malicious malware attachments to spam emails that appeared to contain invoices, job offers, security warnings and other legitimate files. Nearly 100 countries were impacted.

Separately on Saturday, finance chiefs from the Group of Seven rich countries will commit to join forces to fight the growing threat of international cyberattacks, according to a draft statement of a meeting they are holding in Bari, Italy.
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Additional reporting by Reuters.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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