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Cyber Attacks On Hospitals, A New Kind Of Deadly Virus

The consequences can be catastrophic when cyber criminals blackmail hospitals. Experts are warning hospitals that they're not doing enough to protect their patients' data.

Cyber Attacks On Hospitals, A New Kind Of Deadly Virus
Florian Flade, Kristian Frigelj and Ileana Grabitz

BERLIN — Most of the patients of the Lukas Hospital were unaware that their hospital had fallen victim to a dangerous cyber attack. The hospital, located in the western German city of Neuss, had to deal with an unprecedented and unexpected catastrophe after hackers managed to smuggle a Trojan into the hospital database via an email.

The malware threatened to encrypt all data, which forced the hospital to turn off every single server and computer in its system. The hospital received a clear message from the still-unknown attackers: You will only be given the code to decipher the encryption if you pay a ransom. A real hostage situation — albeit a digital one.

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FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War

Kharkiv Revisited: Inside Russia's New Assault On The "Hero City" Of Ukraine

The nation's second-largest city, Kharkiv was quiet for weeks after Ukrainian forces took control. But now it is again under attack as Russia pushes to capture the city that's considered the "gateway" to Ukraine. Die Welt reports from the frontline.

Damages due to Russian shelling in Kharkiv, Ukraine

Alfred Hackensberger

KHARKIV — "Come, I want to show you something," Denys Vezenych says, opening the door of his dental office.

The 40-year-old begins to tell the story in the waiting room: "It was April 16 when the Russian artillery shell hit. The windowpanes were broken, the walls had holes everywhere and the roof was destroyed. But I renovated everything."

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The repairs cost him several thousand euros. "You have to think positively, because life goes on," he explains with a smile. But this attitude is not so present generally in Saltivka, a neighborhood in northeastern Kharkiv. The dental practice may be like new, but the rest of this area in the northeastern Ukrainian city is completely destroyed.

The Russian army has done a great job in its three-month offensive on Ukraine's second largest metropolis. Countless flats have been burned out, the facades of houses have been shot to pieces, entire shopping centers have been bombed. Debris still lie in the streets everywhere.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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