Simon Coveney says Government has established a "war room" amid cyber attacks 1 month ago

Simon Coveney says Government has established a "war room" amid cyber attacks

Both the HSE and Department of Health have faced cyber attacks in the past week.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney has said that the Government has established a “war room” in response to the cyber attacks on the HSE and the Department of Health over the past week.

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The HSE was hit by a ransomware attack on Friday, meanwhile, it was confirmed that the Department of Health has shut down its systems after a similar attack which occurred earlier this week.

Speaking on Sunday, Coveney said that the Government is not talking to the criminals involved in the attack.

Speaking to RTÉ radio's This Week on Sunday, Coveney said it's going to take "quite some time, to clean that data, piece by piece, and to try to back up and protect as much of the data as we possibly can."

“What has happened here is that right across our HSE health care system, malware has been inserted across the network in multiple locations," he added.

"This is a very serious attack, we're taking it seriously, and we're taking all of the international advice that we can to make sure we get that right."

Minister Coveney said the cyber-attacks are “very serious, and I don’t think anyone should downplay that.”

“The HSE have effectively set up a war room in Walworth street. They’re working very closely with the National Cyber Security Centre, they’re getting advised by the gardai, the defense forces, the Department of Justice, Department of Communications, and my department of defense are all involved," he continued.

The Department of Health confirmed that The National Cyber Security Centre, along with the gardaí and the Defence Forces, is currently investigating the attacks.

They said in a statement on Sunday: "The Department of Health can confirm that late last week it was subject to a ransomware attack similar to the attack on the HSE. Since Thursday we have been working to respond to this incident.

"We continue to work closely with all relevant authorities, including the National Cyber Security Centre, An Garda Siochana, and the HSE. We continue to assess the impact across all our systems and our focus is on protecting our data."

The Department is also working with Europol to investigate the attack which is believed to be criminal.