Singapore govt health database hacked - Security

Pearl Mccarthy
July 23, 2018

In addition, it has also been disclosed that Lee Hsien Loong - Singapore Prime Minister - had his personal particulars stolen as well as his outpatient dispensed medicines record, in what was described as "specific and repeated" targetted attacks.

Around 1.5 million people who visited outpatient clinics from May 1 2015 to July 4 this year had their personal data accessed and copied, including names, identification card numbers, addresses, race, gender and dates of birth.

Singapore has been hit by a major cyber attack that saw a database containing the personal information of about 1.5 million people, more than a quarter of the population, stolen.

And while a malware might have been used in that initial attack on the workstation, it would take more than having the right malware detection tools to solve the problem, said Francis Prince Thangasamy, CenturyLink's Asia-Pacific vice president of IT services and managed hosting.

Data exfiltration occurred between June 27 and July 4, the newspaper reported. Singapore has assured everyone that no data was tampered with, amended or deleted. "No other patient records, such as diagnosis, test results or doctors' notes, were breached", according to the organisation's blog post.

Meanwhile, the Minister-in-charge of Cybersecurity, S Iswaran, on Friday, 20 July, convened a Committee of Inquiry (CoI) into the incident.

"I don't know what the attackers were hoping to find", the Prime Minister said.

"We apologise unreservedly to patients for the anxiety caused and will continue to do all that we can to reach out to them", SingHealth said in its update.

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European governments tend to want to exert more control than the US. "We will continue to do it, no matter the political context". Google has rejected the EU's accusations, arguing that its approach encourages competition.

Among the actions taken by SingHealth was its imposition of a temporary Internet surfing separation on all of its 28,000 staff's work computers.

Now, security measures have been tightened, official said.

After that first incident, again on July 4, Integrated Health Information Systems (IHIS) detected suspicious activity on one of SingHealth's IT databases.

"With regard to the prime minister's data and why he was targeted, I would say that it's perhaps best not to speculate what the attacker had in mind", said David Koh, head of Singapore's Cyber Security Agency. A police report was made on July 12. They can also check if their data has been compromised by going to the SingHealth website, or by using the Health Buddy mobile app.

SingHealth will begin contacting the affected patients from Friday via SMSes.

"Government services, from healthcare to education, are targets that are just as likely, as evidenced by the recent attacks in Singapore", Backer said.

Not necessary, especially if one has done online shopping- your personal details, financial details, online behaviour tracked through "clicks", etc. are already being leveraged to improve one's "online experience", Wang said, "Many government agencies today hold their citizens' cradle-to-grave data.

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