Feeds

NHS website hit by MASSIVE malware security COCKUP

'Internal coding error' at fault...

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Updated Hundreds of URLs on the NHS website have been flooded with malware by hackers and - at time of writing - it remains exposed.

The security blunder was first spotted early this morning and an alert was posted on Reddit along with a list of 587 pages said to have been compromised on the www.nhs.uk site.

The Register put calls in to NHS England, NHS Choices, the Department of Health and the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) to find out what had gone wrong.

A DoH spokesman said "thanks for letting us know" before adding that it was not responsible for the website.

El Reg initially drew a blank from the staffer* who answered the phone at the HSCIC - the body responsible for controversially collecting medical records from GPs and setting up and managing national IT systems for the NHS.

She told us: "I'm not au fait with the web, digital, etc," but added that she would get someone to call us back shortly.

The HSCIC eventually confirmed that it was working on a statement and would have something to say about the security cockup by lunchtime today.

NHS Choices said on its Twitter account:

Reddit user Muzzers, who first raised the alarm about the malware, said:

It seems that many pages include these malicious script tags ... which then kicks off the whole ordeal. Hiding the script under a malicious url googleaspis.com instead of a valid googleapis.com.

®

* Not an official spokesperson.

Update

The NHS has sent us this comment:

An internal coding error has caused an incorrect re-direct on some pages on NHS Choices since Sunday evening. Routine security checks alerted us to this problem on Monday morning at which point we identified the problem and corrected the code.

We are now "flushing through" this correction to ensure that the code on all affected pages is amended and expect this to be completed this afternoon.

We can confirm that this problem has arisen due to an internal coding error and that NHS Choices has not been maliciously attacked.

NHS Choices is treating this issue with urgency and once resolved we plan to undertake a thorough and detailed analysis to ensure that a full code review is undertaken and steps put in place to ensure no reoccurrence.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
MI6 oversight report on Lee Rigby murder: US web giants offer 'safe haven for TERRORISM'
PM urged to 'prioritise issue' after Facebook hindsight find
Assange™ slumps back on Ecuador's sofa after detention appeal binned
Swedish court rules there's 'great risk' WikiLeaker will dodge prosecution
NSA mass spying reform KILLED by US Senators
Democrats needed just TWO more votes to keep alive bill reining in some surveillance
'Internet Freedom Panel' to keep web overlord ICANN out of Russian hands – new proposal
Come back with our internet! cries Republican drawing up bill
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
How to determine if cloud backup is right for your servers
Two key factors, technical feasibility and TCO economics, that backup and IT operations managers should consider when assessing cloud backup.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.