TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Worm Infects Hospital Systems / Security Breach at MGH, Brigham

Worm Infects Hospital Systems / Security Breach at MGH, Brigham

Monty Solomon (
Fri, 19 Aug 2005 19:23:46 -0400

By Christopher Rowland, Globe Staff

The computer worm that struck systems around the nation over the last
week breached security at Partners HealthCare Systems Inc. and
infected 800 computers at four of its five acute-care hospitals,
including Massachusetts General and Brigham and Women's in Boston.

Partners called the breach 'modest' and said it did not appear to have
affected patient care or compromised medical records. The healthcare
network has 55,000 computerized devices connected to its systems.

Responding to an alert of a vulnerability last week by Microsoft
Corp., Partners computer experts had already installed preventive
measures on the most sensitive records systems by the time the worm
attacked Saturday night, said John Glaser, Partners chief information

The systems affected were lower in priority, including computers used
in research and in the human resources department, he said. The worm
caused the computers to repeatedly reboot on their own, but did not
destroy data.

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