Healthcare Technology and the Growing Demand for Cybersecurity
The patient and financial data that healthcare organizations store and have access to has become a valuable and attractive treasure trove for cyberattackers. According to FortiGuard Labs, cyberattacks against healthcare organizations occur at nearly double the rate seen in other industries.1 Making matters worse, attacks against healthcare organizations not only impact sensitive data but can also be life-threatening, as in a 2016 attack on MedStar Health in Maryland.2 Cyberprotection is often seen as the organization’s primary priority after providing patient care.
As in other industries, many of the most recent attacks against healthcare organizations started with a compromised PC or other device used by staff. Email is a common attack vector, and given the frequent use of images by medical personnel, corrupted JPEG files are commonly used. Making cybersecurity even more of a daunting task, many healthcare organizations allow access to key data by non-employees such as consulting doctors and healthcare cooperatives.
Certainly, healthcare providers must recognize that today’s skilled and clever attackers can easily negotiate older cyberdefenses. Improving defensive posture requires new technology, processes and tools.
Enhanced Cybersecurity for Healthcare Organizations
The first line of defense in protecting healthcare organizations will continue to be endpoints, the individual devices used by doctors, nurses, specialists and employees. To protect those endpoints, leading healthcare organizations are focusing on best-in-class hardware and software vendors that provide built-in, integrated security functionality. Having built-in security is more effective and comprehensive than trying to “self-integrate” many disparate security tools, and it can be managed with automation. In addition, providing higher levels of data protection at the hardware and software levels is essential in next-generation devices.
Augmenting protection with more effective and secure user authentication is incredibly important. Compromised user credentials have been the starting point for many major data breaches. New devices and software support multifactor authentication (MFA), which is much more secure. Rather than just a username and password, MFA uses fingerprints, facial recognition, and other physical attributes to prevent stolen passwords from being used.
Given the value of the personal and financial information contained in many medical records, there is also a need for vastly improved data protection. This includes protecting the data stored on the devices, in addition to information being communicated to them. Beyond this, ensuring that data is protected when systems are serviced or disposed of is an important requirement for securing devices used by a clinic or hospital.
And in healthcare, there is always the issue of compliance. Older devices and software can’t meet or support many aspects of HIPAA compliance. The first is improved user authentication, including MFA. Second is the need for encrypting data that is being stored on digital systems. Third, and perhaps most difficult for healthcare IT teams, is documentation that effective device security is in place at all times. As fines for noncompliance increase, ignoring cybersecurity is no longer an option.
Lenovo and Intel Answer the Call for More Secure Devices for Healthcare Professionals
Lenovo and Intel are teaming up to deliver next-generation cybersecurity capabilities for healthcare professionals that need absolute confidence in their computing platform while achieving the performance and flexibility needed for healthcare workflows. ThinkShield by Lenovo and Intel® vPro™ Platform deliver a unique combination of power, performance, functionality and security demanded by healthcare professionals.
In an industry dominated by compliance mandates, influenced by legal implications and shaped by the need to deliver cutting-edge, mobile computing platforms, the Lenovo-Intel partnership gives healthcare IT professionals an unsurpassed tool in securing the organization from the data center to the edge, and from the patient’s bedside to clinical research facilities.
Lenovo ThinkShield provides stronger authentication tools than ever, particularly with its partnership with Intel® Authenticate technology for multi-factor authentication using protected fingerprint and facial recognition, as well as protected PIN authentication.
Lenovo’s ThinkShield offering, in combination with Intel® vPro™ platform, provides healthcare organizations with greater cyberprotection, using an integrated and comprehensive cybersecurity platform. For more information, please go to: https://solutions.lenovo.com/pc-solutions/thinkshield/
1 “The Healthcare Industry Is in a World of Cybersecurity Hurt,” TechCrunch, Aug. 9, 2018
2 “MedStar Health Turns Away Patients After Likely Ransomware Cyberattack,” The Washington Post, March 29, 2016