Securing medical devices is crucial


The NHS has told hospitals to shore up security due to risk of an international cyber attack amid the conflict in Ukraine, with NHS boss Amanda Prichard saying cyber-security is now at the ‘forefront’. IoT connected medical devices like ventilators or robotic surgery arms can be hacked and cause attacks, or let in ransomware like WannaCry which previously hit the NHS hard. These tools will need to be secured to ensure nothing is an entry point for hackers.

Keiron Holyome, VP UK, Ireland, and Middle East, BlackBerry said “As the NHS urges hospitals to reinforce cybersecurity amid the current international conflict, many in healthcare will remember the devastating effects of the WannaCry ransomware attacks. Ransomware can use any poorly protected endpoint to enter and cripple a system, holding sensitive NHS data to ransom with the risk of its release to the dark web or beyond.  

To prevent attacks, healthcare organisations must ensure that every device is safe, reliable, secure and safety certifiable: everything from staff computers to IoT-connected medical devices such as ventilators or robotic surgery arms. To spot vulnerabilities, cybersecurity that leaves no blind spots will be critical. AI-based threat prevention and the enabling of a Zero Trust security environment which continuously validates that trust at every event to authenticate users is vital. 

To ensure new devices don’t become an entry point for attackers, it’s important that security is built into products in the supply chain. Manufacturers who create medical devices need to use a software foundation specifically designed for secure connectivity. Embedded software solutions help medical device manufacturers achieve this innovation. They also need to be able to rely on training, back-up and managed services to connect with security professionals at every turn.


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Media contact

Rebecca Morpeth Spayne,
Editor, Security Portfolio
Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 922

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