07.11.09

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How Long Before NHS Follows LSE’s Footsteps and Dumps Windows?

Posted in Microsoft, Security, Windows at 2:42 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Surgeons

Summary: The NHS is morbidly ill due to use of Windows

A MONTH ago we wrote about the NHS compromising the life of English patients by choosing friends over technology. The NHS is close to Microsoft [1, 2] and grants contracts to Microsoft partners. It leads to a never-ending string of hospitals that are hit by viruses [1, 2, 3] and this latest Register report suggests that there is no ending to trouble, just like with the Windows-powered LSE platform, which crashed repeatedly and is now being dumped.

NHS hospitals struggle to hold back the malware tide

Malware infection problems at NHS hospitals are a more serious problem than isolated reports of infestation might suggest, according to an investigation by More4 News.

Last November an infection by the MyTob worm created huge administrative headaches at three London hospitals – Barts, the Royal London and the London Chest Hospital – that are part of the same NHS Trust. The infection forced the hospitals to briefly reroute ambulances and disrupted hospital administration while the infection was being contained. Some medical staff had to resort to pen and paper backup systems.

In other security news, Windows users should be sparingly cautious around the Web. From The Register again:

The Koobface worm, which previously infected users of Facebook and MySpace, is spreading among users of micro-blogging website Twitter.

The scale of the attack is unclear but serious enough for Twitter to issue a warning on Friday morning, via the service’s status page. Koobface-related activity has been detected on Twitter before, but the latest assault has provoked a more concerted response from the micro-blogging service, including plans to temporarily suspend compromised accounts.

Well, it could be worse. Windows’ inherent flaws may lead to unnecessary (preventable) deaths in hospitals and also to endless wrestling with malicious software, but wars are a lot more deadly and they too become a realised possibility (“North Korea a suspect in cyber attacks in US”) as Windows is ubiquitously used and routinely becomes part of botnets.

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