Sony hackers LulzSec informed the NHS that the group had obtained a number of administrative passwords.
"We mean you no harm and only want to help you fix your tech issues," Lulz Security emailed the NHS.
In a reference to the coverage of the 15-year-old terminal cancer sufferer Alice’s ‘bucket list’, LulzSec concluded: "We hope that little girls feasts on the bonres of many giving souls."
The Department of Health told the BBC that only a ‘very small number of website administrators’ were involved and that no patient information was exposed by the breach.
New York based bank Citigroup also reported a seperate data breach in which hackers had accessed credit card account numbers and contact details of 200,000 North American customers.