In May of 2017, the WannaCry virus took a dramatic toll on the U.K.’s National Health Service (NHS)—the largest single-payer healthcare system in the world. According to a report released by the National Audit Office (NAO)*, the attack is believed to have infected machines at 81 health trusts—which accounts for nearly one-third of NHS trusts in the U.K. In addition, according to the report, 19,500 medical appointments were cancelled, computers at 600 general practices were locked, and five hospitals had to divert ambulances to other medical facilities.
According to the report, the vulnerability was able to penetrate the system because of a lack of patching. Patches are provided by vendors to resolve known vulnerabilities.
Many organisations do not perform patch management frequently or effectively for a variety of reasons—the most common of which include the complexity of patching, lack of time, and a lack of visibility into patching across the organisation. SolarWinds® Patch Manager was designed to alleviate many of the pain points government IT pros feel today and can help to eliminate the possibility of an infection by a WannaCry-type virus.