24 June 2019
UK police have stopped work with Eurofins Forensic Services following a cyber-attack on the firm.
The hiatus has led to delays in forensic testing, which could impact on court cases. Eurofins, the largest private forensic company in the country, carries out DNA testing, toxicology analysis, firearms testing and computer forensics for police forces across the UK.
Its parent company, Eurofins, suffered a ransomware attack on June 1st or 2nd, which is under criminal investigation.
Ransomware is a computer virus that prevents users from accessing their system or personal files and demands ransom payment in order to unlock access.
"Our priority is to minimise the impact on the criminal justice system," said the NPCC lead for forensics, chief constable James Vaughan. "It is too early to fully quantify the impact but we are working at pace with partners to understand and mitigate the risks."
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said a police investigation was ongoing, but at this stage there was "no evidence to suggest that previous convictions were unsafe".
A spokesperson added: "The CPS is assessing current cases to identify any impact on criminal trials as a result of this attack, and will ensure all necessary action is taken to allow them to proceed fairly."