Cyber attack in Auckland? HealthAlliance sees ‘unusual activity’ | #government | #hacking | #cyberattack


HealthAlliance provides IT services to district health boards that serve about 1.9 million New Zealanders.

A cyber-security incident appears to be unfolding at the organisation that provides health IT services to more than a third of the country.

HealthAlliance, which supports the Auckland, Counties Manuaku, Waitemata and Northland district health boards, said it had “identified indications of unusual activity on its technology systems”.

An investigation was underway to understand and address the cause, a HealthAlliance spokeswoman said.

She indicated there was nothing to link the activity to the ransomware attack on Waikato DHB in May and said all northern region DHB IT systems were functioning normally.

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A Health Ministry spokesman said the ministry was “providing support to the investigation”.

HealthAlliance acknowledged the incident after a senior medical professional tipped-off Stuff that DHBs had been briefed about what they understood to be a “significant cyber event”.

“HealthAlliance are running the incident, they’ve told their customers (DHBs) they are dealing with a serious hack.

“Management have told us something is going on, but are very light on details,” they said.

The Government and Ministry of Health were involved, they said.

The four DHBs supported by HealthAlliance together serve about 1.9 million New Zealanders.

The clinician said health workers were concerned about the safety of patient data, given the ransomware attack that unfolded at Waikato DHB in May.

“I’m worried about possible impacts on patient care.”

There were lots of rumours that the incident could be similar to what happened in Waikato, they said.

HealthAlliance’s spokeswoman said she was not aware of a cyber-security incident when first contacted by Stuff on Friday morning.

Auckland DHB and Waitemata spokespeople also appeared to have no knowledge of the matter.

But HealthAlliance’s spokeswoman confirmed the unusual activity after consulting with other staff.

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