JM | Jan 25, 2023

Opposition calls for Tufton to come clean about SERHA data breach

/ Our Today

Reading Time: 2 minutes
Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Christopher Tufton. (Photo: JIS)

Omar Newell, junior opposition spokesperson on commerce, science and technology, is calling for the minister of health, Dr Christopher Tufton, to tell Jamaica what he knows about the alleged data breach at the South East Regional Health Authority (SERHA).

In a media release two weeks ago, SERHA reported that digital communication within the region is currently unavailable and has been so since January 10, 2023, due to a network issue. According to the Opposition, SERHA then advised staff that there would be delays in their January salary due to network issues.

However, the Opposition said it was in receipt of information that suggests that there has been a serious security breach at SERHA. Newell said several sources have indicated that patient records were breached, and the hackers are demanding a ransom.

“Information first came to my attention on Wednesday, 11th January, that certain vulnerabilities at SERHA were exploited by persons with ill intent. Additional information received suggests that the breach may be greater than suggested by SERHA,” noted Newell.

He added that “by international standards, it is good practice for organisations to acknowledge when there is a data breach, the extent of the breach and steps being taken to have same corrected”. 

Newell is calling on the minister to indicate whether patient records and any other data have been accessed by any external party, if any data was in fact breached and whether said data was encrypted.


What To Read Next