Hackers Shut Down System for Booking COVID-19 Shots in Italy’s Lazio Region

By Reuters
August 1, 2021 Updated: August 1, 2021

MILAN—Hackers have attacked and shut down the IT systems of the company that manages COVID-19 vaccination appointments for the Lazio region surrounding Rome, the regional government said on Sunday.

“A powerful hacker attack on the region’s CED (database) is underway,” the region said in a Facebook posting.

It said all systems had been deactivated, including those of the region’s health portal and vaccination network, and warned the inoculation program could suffer a delay.

“It is a very powerful hacker attack, very serious … everything is out. The whole regional CED is under attack,” Lazio region’s health manager Alessio D’Amato said.

According to ANSA, Italy’s postal police and Rome prosecutors are looking into the matter and could open an investigation to find out who is behind the attack.

Protest against government's "Green Pass" plan in Rome
A banning reads “Green Pass = Blackmail” is seen at a demonstration against the Green Pass plan (health pass) in Rome on July 28, 2021. (Guglielmo Mangiapane/Reuters)

Italy recently followed France in announcing that proof of vaccination or immunity from COVID-19 would become mandatory for an array of activities.

The move triggered a series of protests across the country against the introduction of the so-called Green Pass which shows people have been vaccinated, tested negative, or recovered from COVID-19.

By Stephen Jewkes