Hackers who stole 70TB of private information have called into question the UK's data protection laws.
The cyberattack was confirmed by Barts Health NHS Trust, the largest healthcare trust in the UK that provides care to over 2.5 million patients across five hospitals in London.
The ALPHV / BlackCat group of attackers claim to have stolen 70 TB of sensitive data. Employees' private papers and private internal letters are among the stolen data. The hackers claimed that the attack represented the biggest UK-wide data breach involving public health.
The Barts Health NHS Trust's press office confirmed the information regarding the cyberattack and stated that an ongoing investigation into the incident was taking place.
The NHS Trust had three days to get in touch with the gang and stop the release of the data, "most of which is citizens' confidential documents," according to the BlackCat group, which revealed the cyberattack on Barts Health for the first time on June 30. It should be noted that the entire set of stolen data has not yet been published.
It is important to note that this is the second significant security incident to occur on the NHS in recent weeks.
In the past, Barts Health had 7TB of internal documents stolen by ALPHV/BlackCat. The group made public a number of the documents it is alleged to have stolen from Barts Health, including copies of employees' passports and driver's licences as well as "confidential" stamps on internal emails and correspondence.
The UK public sector has been the target of numerous cyberattacks in recent months. The case involving the British outsourcing firm Capita, which is crucial to the nation's government, generated the most noise. More than 90 organisations have reported privacy violations of personal information as a result of this attack, which the Black Basta group has claimed responsibility for.
Both incidents are being looked into by the National Cybersecurity Center (NCSC) of the UK. NHS England declined to respond to a request for comment.