Over the past week, Hillel Yaffe Medical Center in Hadera, Israel, has suffered a cyberattack. The attackers demanded ransom, but the hospital management refused to cave in and switched to manual mode where possible or to alternative systems. All over Europe and the US, hospitals and other sensitive institutions face online threats since hackers believe that the necessity to restore functionality quickly will cause those facilities to give in quickly and give them what they want. To deal with the problem, facilities and governments must join hands and create short-term and long-term solutions. The short-term one requires disconnection of systems from the internet; the long-term solution requires increased connection and concern among people.
No system is hack-proof. Therefore, some systems simply need to be disconnected from any network. Everything from the generator that provides electricity to the server room must be isolated from the world. It may not be very convenient, but until humanity grows up, we cannot leave the lives of countless people to the mercies of heartless people who will kill for money.
While disconnecting sensitive systems from the internet seems to be the only solution, it is only a temporary one. Since people always devise new tactics and technologies to get their evil way, sooner or later, they will overcome even such drastic measures.
Therefore, the long-term solution must deal with the source of the problem, which is human nature itself. Changing human nature is a prolonged educational process. Disconnection from the internet buys us time, but we must still hurry if we want to avoid far worse catastrophes than breaking into hospital networks.
The purpose of the educational process is to make us aware that we are all interconnected. If we truly realize that all of humanity is connected not only through the internet, but that even our thoughts and feelings are a part of the network, we will see that hurting others hurts us, too, and our motivation to do harm will evaporate.
This process will project positively on all the systems of life, and on all the people; this is why it is such a comprehensive process and requires the support of governments and international organizations. Hacking hospitals, water plants, and other sensitive facilities for ransom is only one symptom of a society that is sickened by alienation. If we cared about each other, we wouldn’t be able to do it.
The human network that we all form, consciously or not, functions properly only if there are care and concern among us. This is why the long-term process will heal everything, and not just eliminate cyberattacks.
To do that, we must “hack” the human code and reprogram ourselves from the self-centered mode we are in right now, to a more inclusive and caring one. Otherwise, as we can already tell, the code within us will cause us to self-destruct.