UCL Institute of Health Informatics


A Primer on Cybersecurity for Physicians

3 September 2019

Two years on from the 2017 worldwide cyber attack, an IHI researcher has contributed to a paper setting out key things to consider when thinking about security and cyber safety.

A Primer on Cybersecurity for Physicians

The 2017 WannaCry ransomeware attack encrypted the data stored on an estimated 230,000 computers in over 150 countries with organisations still running an unsupported version of Microsoft Windows (ie those who had not installed a security update) most at risk. The attack hit IT infrastructure across industries worldwide including the health sector. Most notably the attack hit the NHS hard causing a variety of negative impacts such as cancelled operations and delays in the administering of chemotherpay treatments. 

Two years on from the attack, the IHI's Dr Nathan Lea and Filip de Meyer co-authored a summary intended to encourage readers to consider how they might work more securely and advocate for cybersecurity to become a standing item during business as usual. The summary makes suggestions which fall under four main categories; 

  1. Up to date software
  2. Malware and antivirus
  3. Infrastructure 
  4. Seeking and sharing the knowledge 

For the reccomendations, read the full paper: