Blood tests to resume at NHS cyber attack hospitals from tomorrow

Ransomware cyber-attack a wake-up call Microsoft

"They have been working I know through the night nearly to make sure patches are in place to make sure that hopefully the NHS services can get back to normal", he told BBC radio.

"There was an impact on appointments and the general operation of the surgeries but they were still open".

Hackers took control of computers and cut off phone lines in hospitals on Friday causing mayhem and leaving large sections of NHS services down over the weekend.

"In addition to protective real-time monitoring of national NHS IT services and systems, which were unaffected by this issue, we are supporting NHS organisations by undertaking cyber security testing and providing bespoke advice and action points".

Wallace denied that underinvestment in the NHS - a key claim of the opposition Labour Party ahead of the June 8 election - may have left health services exposed to such attacks.

Hundreds of hospitals and clinics in the British National Health Service were infected on Friday, forcing them to send patients to other facilities.

"We're in the face of an escalating threat, the numbers are going up", he said, and added that the current attack was unprecedented.

The malicious software behind the onslaught appeared to exploit a vulnerability in Microsoft Windows that was supposedly identified by the National Security Agency for its own intelligence-gathering purposes and was later leaked to the internet.

NHS Digital said it had made health trusts aware last month of IT protection that could have prevented the damage.

'There has been a report to the Australian Cyber Security centre of one instance of what we believe could be this ransomware, ' she told reporters in Cairns.

"These alerts included a patch to protect their systems".

Several hospitals were still facing disruptions on Monday, with St Bartholomew's in London cancelling appointments and warning of delays to pathology and diagnostic services.

But computers and networks that didn't update their systems remained at risk.

"We put aside £50 million specifically for cyber security and for the NHS".

University of Melbourne computing expert Dr Suelette Dreyfus believes it was possible local organisations had been hit, only they're keeping it under wraps.

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