December 20

Cyberattacks on Hospitals Thwart India’s Push to Digitize Health Care

By Raksha Kumar

In late November, as a thick layer of smog settled on the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi, patients began to experience extended wait times. Long lines snaked along the vast building and backed up for several yards.

Computers at the hospital had stopped working, so medical reports could not be generated. Though patients were still being treated, paper bills were being handed out. After a few days, people who feared that traveling back home would be too expensive began to sleep under a nearby overpass to wait it out.

A massive cyberattack had compromised the health data of millions of patients, from those who live in extreme poverty to high-profile politicians, bureaucrats and judges.

The Delhi Police had a bigger problem at hand. They were in possession of an email that read, “What happened? Your files are encrypted? What is the price to repair? The price depends on how fast you can pay to us,” reported news sources.

Photo courtesy of NEC Corporation of America.

Source: NPR (link opens in a new window)

Health Care, Technology
digital identity, healthcare technology