The secure network of the UK Parliament has been breached and some of its computers compromised by hackers. It was also reported that the hackers compromised the systems by distributing and spreading crypto-ransomware that encrypted sensitive files in a shared drive that are used by around 8,500 government employees.

Chi Onwurah, MP for Newcastle upon Tyne Central was faced with a ransom note and reported the problem. The Parliamentary Digital Service (PDS) removed her from the shared drive and then took her computers and replaced the hard drives. Onwurah said no files that contained essential information were compromised.

The May incident prompted the MP to begin an investigation to find out the extent of cyber-attacks on MPs and how well the defences put up by the PDS work to guard against the attacks.

“A lot of what I deal with is very confidential to the person concerned. They should expect a high level of confidentiality and a high level of security,” Onwurah said.