Cyberattack hits major hospital in Spanish city of Barcelona

March 6, 2023 GMT

MADRID (AP) — A ransomware cyberattack on one of Barcelona’ s main hospitals has crippled the center’s computer system and forced the cancellation of 150 nonurgent operations and up to 3,000 patient checkups, officials said Monday.

The attack Sunday on the Hospital Clinic de Barcelona shut down computers at the facility’s laboratories, emergency room and pharmacy at three main centers and several external clinics.

“We can’t make any prediction as to when the system will be back up to normal,” hospital director Antoni Castells told a news conference on Monday. He said the hospital’s contingency plan would allow them to function for several days, but he hoped the system would be fixed sooner.

A Catalonia regional government statement said the region’s Cybersecurity Agency was working to restore the system. The agency said Monday the attack was orchestrated from outside of Spain by a group called “Ransom House.”

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Regional government telecommunications secretary Segi Marcén said that hackers hadn’t made any ransom demand so far but that no money would be paid.

The hospital’s press department said that all written work was being done on paper and that the hospital was diverting new urgent cases to other hospitals in the city. Spanish state news agency EFE said the attack cut off access to patients records and communication between units.