The Internet of Things is an exciting prospect for healthcare; but how can the NHS ensure it is properly secured?
The healthcare sector turns conventional security thinking on its head; instead of seeing security as vital to service delivery, patient care is understandably the top priority. That’s not to say that cyber security isn’t factored in; but if it becomes a limiting factor in delivering that care in a timely fashion then it’s in danger of being factored straight back out again. It’s a conflict that healthcare management has managed to juggle pretty well, truth be told, but that could all be about to change. And the catalyst is the Internet of Medical Things.
It’s relatively easy to secure things from the perimeter. It is far less easy to secure ‘things’ that extend beyond fixed network architectures. Start throwing myriad connected devices into the healthcare equation and pretty quickly you end up with a new borderless network perimeter paradigm that cannot be adequately defended without a paradigm shift. This borderless network, often spread across multiple locations – and which could even include a patient’s home – comprises everything from wearable devices such as personal glucose monitors and fitness trackers, through to IV pumps.