Are We Ready for Cyber-Attacks?

By Dr. Ann Griffiths, 4 November 2021

We’ve all watched with horror – mixed with anger – the fallout from the cyber-attack on the health care system in Newfoundland and Labrador. It’s hard to imagine the kind of twisted mind that would take an action that results in the delay of thousands of medical appointments and procedures, presumably in order to extort money. It puts the issue of cyber-security front and centre, and makes it real to Canadians. We can only hope that organizations, institutions and agencies are at this moment backing up their files and beefing up their cyber-security. We assume that military facilities have strict cyber protocols, but with many people still working from home, are military systems secure from this sort of attack? It’s undoubtedly much easier to ensure cyber-security when people are working from offices with more secure connections, DND-controlled and Shared Services Canada (SSC) maintained IT infrastructure, than when people are working from home. Some medical systems in St. John’s were back online on 4 November, but not everywhere in the province and it’s not clear if there will be problems with the files. This is a wakeup call for everyone. For more details of the attack see https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/nl-cyber-attack-worst-canada-1.6236210

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