NHS trusts splashed £260m on PCs in last four years

Obviously not enough to stop Wannacry...

NHS hosptial photo, by Marbury via Shutterstock

In the last four years, NHS Trusts have spent £260m on 401,084 new PCs, at an average cost of £650.54 a box, according to Freedom of Information responses.

More than 100 NHS trusts splashed £34m on new PCs in the first half of 2017 alone, according to an analysis of the data.

However, despite splashing cash on new computers and operating systems, thousands of PCs in 42 separate NHS trusts were hit by the Wannacry/Wannacrypt ransomware at the end of May, installed by a worm that infects Windows systems and spreads across networks by exploiting various unpatched vulnerabilities.

The research was conducted by memory storage outfit Crucial, which sent requests to 235 NHS Trusts in England, of which 197 replied with varying responses.

It revealed that since the beginning of 2013, NHS Trusts have disposed of 237,422 laptops and computers. Earlier this month, UK Parliamentary spending watchdogs at the National Audit Office, launched an inquiry into the impact of the recent WannaCry/pt ransomware attack on the NHS.

Lack of accountability and investment in cyber-security was blamed for the severity of the outbreak. Emergency measures specifically allocated to deal with last month's NHS ransomware attack cost £180,000, according to a government health minister.

The usage of Windows XP in the NHS has reduced from 15-18 per cent at December 2015, to 4.7 per cent of systems, Department of Health minister Jackie Doyle-Price said in a written answer to Parliament late last month*. ®

* It is likely XP was not the main infection vector, security experts have said.


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