Tusla - Ireland's Child & Family Agency

Cyber Attack on HSE Systems 

Tusla - Child and Family Agency continues to be significantly affected by the recent cyber-attack on HSE systems. 

Speaking about the challenges of the current situation, Bernard Gloster, CEO, Tusla said: “We have many files and databases on the HSE network and all of these are unavailable to us at this time. While there is no doubt that our staff are challenged by the current situation, teams around the country have a vast array of professional knowledge and that, coupled with manual systems ensures we are able to continue to prioritise our immediate Child Protection and Children in Care services.” 

Earlier today the CEO issued a written briefing to members of the Oireachtas Committee on Children, Disability, Equality and Integration setting out the approach to managing the crisis since last Friday May 14th. 

Referrals continue to operate manually as the portal normally used for identifying concerns to the Agency is switched off. 

The CEO assured the Committee and the public that every effort will continue to be made to reduce the impact of this crime on people. Our care, protection and support services will continue to be available. While there is evidence of encryption associated with the attack, including on the Agency’s operating systems, there is no indication at this time of information theft. The CEO said that he continues to receive assuring updates on this aspect “however it is too early to be definitive”. The HSE Court orders obtained on May 20th do cover the Tusla information hosted on the HSE Network. 

The Agency is also continuing to ensure that important payments due to be made are fulfilled to the nearest possible normal timelines. Examples are payments of aftercare allowances to care leavers, foster care payments, payments to providers and staff. Manual work arounds are being used. In a small number of cases there will be a delay and provision has been made to ensure no one is in difficulty. Provisions have been made for cases before the Court, which are often time sensitive. We are working with our legal representatives and the Court service to ensure that no child subject of Court proceedings is negatively impacted. 

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