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NHS Dumfries and Galloway has confirmed that a "small number" of patients' data has been published by a ransomware group following a cyber attack.

The hackers were able to access a significant amount of data including patient and staff-identifiable information.

Reports emerged on Wednesday of a post by the group INC Ransom on its dark web blog, alleging it has three terabytes of data from NHS Scotland.

The post included a “proof pack” of some of the data, which has been confirmed by the board to be genuine.

NHS Dumfries and Galloway Chief Executive Jeff Ace said: “We absolutely deplore the release of confidential patient data as part of this criminal act.

“This information has been released by hackers to evidence that this is in their possession.

“We are continuing to work with Police Scotland, the National Cyber Security Centre, the Scottish Government and other agencies in response to this developing situation.

Patient-facing services continue to function effectively as normal.

“As part of this response, we will be making contact with any patients whose data has been leaked at this point.

“NHS Dumfries and Galloway is very acutely aware of the potential impact of this development on the patients whose data has been published, and the general anxiety which might result within our patient population.”

A spokeswoman for Police Scotland said: “Police Scotland inquiries are continuing into a cyber attack on NHS Dumfries & Galloway.”

A spokesman for the National Cyber Security Centre said: “We are working with law enforcement, NHS Scotland and the Scottish Government to fully understand the impact of an incident.”

Join the hundreds of customers that we protect every single day through our enhanced security services; book your meeting with CSG today.

We heard from Managing Director, Matthew Bater, who expresses the need to evaluate your cyber security structure:

“This breach further confirms the need need to ensure that your organisation, whatever the size, is keeping up with the changing pace of cyber security standards and technology.  System need to be patched, backups tested and your security posture reviewed and continually improved. “

Set up a meeting with CSG today to learn more about how the CSG team can help you with your security structure to help ensure that this doesn’t happen to you.

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