Healthcare, IoT, and Cybersecurity

2 min read

The use of IoT devices (also known as Internet-connected devices) has grown hugely in healthcare settings. This has brought many clinical benefits, but also additional cybersecurity headaches.


The Adoption of IoT in Healthcare

The use of smart connected devices in healthcare settings has increased sharply in the last few years, partly boosted by the pandemic. The rapid growth looks set to continue. BioSpace reports market research that predicts the global healthcare IoT market will grow from $60 billion in 2019 to $260 billion by 2027.

While the benefits of these devices for patient care and medical staff productivity are easily demonstrable, the rapid rise of smart devices that are accessible on the Internet (or even locally on a hospital’s private network) results in a significant increase in the attack surface that needs to be secured.

Cybersecurity Risks of IoT Devices

Adding any new connected device to a network increases the attack surface and the risk profile. But many medical IoT devices increase the risk disproportionately as many come from manufacturers who do not have cybersecurity in mind during their design processes. Many use open-source software libraries for core operating systems and application functionality. They often ship with known vulnerabilities, or newly discovered flaws in the open-source libraries will emerge later. Updating IoT devices to address flaws is often difficult. Cases of versions of healthcare IoT devices shipping with default hard-coded admin passwords are also documented.

We previously wrote about the Top 6 Hackable Medical IoT Devices. As we outline in that article, there are six IoT device types in everyday use that introduce risks and liabilities under the Confidentiality-Integrity and Availability (CIA) triad that underpins HIPAA compliance, patient data protection, and overall information security.

It is up to each healthcare provider to assess the risk posed by their IoT devices and put protections and processes in place to protect patients, sensitive data, and the healthcare network from attack via IoT device vulnerabilities.

MDR Cybersecurity Services for Healthcare

Critical Insight can help healthcare providers of all sizes secure networks that host IoT and other medical devices. Working in partnership with your IT team and Management, we can ensure you get the medical benefits from the technology, coupled with strong security practices and processes to protect your patients and staff.

Critical Insight takes cybersecurity in the health sector seriously. It is one of the core sectors the company founders wanted to protect. To ensure we have input from experts in the healthcare sector, we created a Healthcare Board of Advisors who bring the needs of medical staff and administrators to the heart of our operations.

Our Managed Detection and Response (MDR) Cybersecurity Services for Healthcare allow healthcare providers to partner with our experts to put cybersecurity at the core of their hospital, clinic, and administrative operations. You can read more about our MDR Cybersecurity Services for Healthcare on our dedicated topic page.

As a testament to Critical Insight’s experience and reputation in the healthcare cybersecurity sector, the American Hospital Association selected us as one of their initial preferred cybersecurity providers. As of November 2022, Critical Insight is one of only ten providers chosen for the program.

Contact Us to Discuss Your Healthcare IoT Cybersecurity

Delivering cybersecurity services to protect critical infrastructure and IT systems in organizations such as healthcare providers is why Critical Insight exists. We have decades of experience on our team across the health sector, local government, state government, and private sector critical infrastructure providers, in addition to the external expertise provided via our Healthcare Board of Advisors.

We can provide cybersecurity services and assistance to healthcare providers across their whole operation. We can work with your IT and leadership teams to assess, plan, and improve your cybersecurity posture over a timescale that makes sense for your organization. Contact us to start a conversation.