NHS cyber attack a 'wake-up call', Microsoft says

Microsoft has warned that the cyber-attack on the NHS and wider countries should serve as a ‘wake-up call’ to governments around the world for allowing data to be stored on vulnerable software.

According to Microsoft, the WannaCry ransomware exploits a flaw in Microsoft Windows first identified by US intelligence.

NHS England has published new guidance urging patients to use the NHS ‘wisely’ as it discovers the full impact of Friday's global cyber-attack.

The body confirmed there was a ‘complex emerging picture’, amid concerns over thousands of computers being switched back on after the weekend. Seven trusts out of 47 that were hit are still facing serious issues, although patients have been told to turn up for appointments, unless advised otherwise.

The virus, known as Wanna Decryptor or WannaCry, has infected 200,000 machines in 150 countries since Friday 12 May.

The seven trusts still experiencing issues include: St Bartholomew's Hospital in London; East and North Hertfordshire Trust; James Paget University Hospitals Trust, Norfolk; Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust; Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust; York Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust; and University Hospital of North Midlands Trust.

Anne Rainsberry, NHS incident director, said: “Remember that [people] can seek help and advice from a range of other sources, such as pharmacies and NHS 111. Bearing in mind the impact of the global cyber-attack, I would urge people to be patient with [NHS] staff."

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