Ireland health service's IT systems go dark after 'significant' ransomware attack

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Ireland's national health service took its computer systems offline May 14 after experiencing a "significant" ransomware attack across its network, CNBC reports. 

The Irish Health Service Executive referred to the incident as a "significant ransomware attack on the [agency's] IT systems," according to HSE Ireland's May 14 tweet. 

"We have taken the precaution of shutting down all ... our IT systems in order to protect them from this attack and to allow us [to] fully assess the situation with our own security partners," the agency wrote. 

Ireland's COVID-19 vaccination rollout has not been affected by the attack, and appointments will move forward as planned; however, the country's registration portal has been taken offline and physicians cannot refer people for testing, so patients must use walk-in testing centers, according to the report. 

The health service's ambulances still are operating normally, according to the report. Rotunda Hospital, a Dublin-based maternity hospital, canceled all outpatient visits May 14, except for women who are 36 or more weeks pregnant. All gynecology clinics also were canceled.

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