Singapore cyber attack: Personal data of more than 1.5 million citizens, including PM, stolen
The health ministry described it as ‘deliberate and well planned’, said attackers targeted PM Lee Hsien Loong’s medication data specifically and repeatedly.
In an unprecedented cyber attack, Singapore said hackers stole the personal details records of more than 1.5 million patients, including those of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, from SingHealth. This includes 160,000 patients who had their outpatient medication data compromised. A statement from the country’s Ministry of Health on Friday described the attack as “deliberate, targeted, and well planned”.
The stolen details include names, addresses, gender, race, dates of birth, and IC numbers, which is a number mentioned on the National Registration Identity Card issued to every citizen. SingHealth is the country’s biggest group of healthcare institutions, with 11 hospitals and centres under its aegis. The patients had visited SingHealth’s specialist clinics from May 2015 to July 4 this year, said the statement.
In a statement on Facebook, Lee said that “the attackers targeted his medication data, specifically and repeatedly”. He has ordered the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore and the Smart Nation and Digital Government Group to work together with the country’s Ministry of Health and tighten up their defences.
Health Minister Gan Kim Yong and Minister for Communications and Information S Iswaran called it an unprecedented breach of personal data in Singapore, reported The Straits Times. Gan said, “We are deeply sorry this has happened.” Iswaran will now form a committee of inquiry to conduct an independent review of the incident.