Fortinet ad­vises health­care sec­tor CISOS to make Wi-fi se­cu­rity top pri­or­ity

Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka) - - HEALTHCARE -

Fortinet, a global leader in broad, in­te­grated and au­to­mated cy­ber­se­cu­rity so­lu­tions, re­cently re­minded Chief In­for­ma­tion Se­cu­rity Of­fi­cers (CISOS) in the health­care sec­tor to make Wi-fi se­cu­rity a top pri­or­ity in pro­tect­ing their or­gan­i­sa­tions.

As In­ter­net of Things (IOT) and mo­bile de­vice adop­tion are driv­ing health­care pro­fes­sion­als to ac­cess their net­works through a mul­ti­tude of de­vices, health­care firms must bal­ance the need for se­cu­rity with the flex­i­bil­ity of al­low­ing al­most any type of de­vice onto their net­works.

Ac­cord­ing to a re­cent IDC re­search re­port, the Asia-pa­cific (APAC) IOT mar­ket is un­der­go­ing a dra­matic ex­pan­sion with the num­ber of con­nected ‘things’ in­creas­ing to 8.6 bil­lion by 2020, rep­re­sent­ing a sig­nif­i­cant 29 per­cent of the global to­tal. In terms of spend­ing on IOT, APAC (ex­clud­ing Japan) is also pro­jected to top the world in 2018 with US$312 bil­lion.

“Hos­pi­tals, clin­ics and el­der care fa­cil­i­ties across Sri Lanka are in­creas­ingly re­ly­ing on wire­less tech­nol­ogy for bet­ter pa­tient out­comes and im­proved op­er­a­tional ef­fi­ciency. From ac­cess­ing pa­tient records with com­put­ers on wheels or hand held tablets, to get­ting teleme­try from med­i­cal de­vices, nurse call sys­tems and lo­ca­tion-track­ing ap­pli­ca­tions, Wi-fi ac­cess is now at the heart of pa­tient care,” said Fortinet In­dia and SAARC Re­gional Vice Pres­i­dent Ra­jesh Maurya.

As the num­ber of ‘head­less’ wire­less de­vices ac­cess­ing the health­care net­work in­creases, the need for ac­cess con­trol and ap­pli­ca­tion se­cu­rity be­comes even more crit­i­cal for any health­care net­work. Health IT or­gan­i­sa­tions must care­fully re­search WLAN and se­cu­rity de­ploy­ment models that does not com­pro­mise the pro­tec­tion pro­vided. Fortinet cites some of the key chal­lenges fac­ing to­day’s lo­cal health­care sec­tor:

A Plethora of Mo­bile De­vices:

Health­care pro­fes­sion­als of­ten have a ver­i­ta­ble arse­nal of mo­bile de­vices at their dis­posal, many of which are per­sonal. They must all be on-boarded se­curely and in com­pli­ance with HIPAA and other health­care stan­dards.

Es­ca­lat­ing Mo­bile Threats:

The pri­or­ity of health­care net­works have al­ways been pro­tect­ing pa­tient data and reg­u­la­tory com­pli­ance. WLAN ven­dors have ro­bust so­lu­tions to neu­tralise wire­less pro­to­col and RF threats such as rogue APS, DDOS and man-in-themid­dle at­tacks. With the ex­plo­sion of mo­bile de­vices in clin­i­cal en­vi­ron­ments, new se­cu­rity mea­sures are re­quired to of­fer con­tin­u­ous pro­tec­tion across this ever-grow­ing at­tack sur­face.

Health­care net­works run both mis­sion-crit­i­cal and life-crit­i­cal ap­pli­ca­tions. This re­quires wire­less LANS to de­liver a glitch-free ac­cess to ev­ery point of the in­sti­tu­tion. Band­width man­age­ment and ap­pli­ca­tion con­trols are there­fore cru­cial for pri­ori­tis­ing mis­sion-crit­i­cal apps while block­ing or throt­tling oth­ers.

Mis­sion-crit­i­cal Apps: Ru­ral and Com­mu­nity Clin­ics:

Whether clin­i­cians are at a hos­pi­tal or at a re­mote clinic, they de­mand a con­sis­tent ex­pe­ri­ence ev­ery time. They need seam­less ac­cess to cen­tralised med­i­cal records, lo­cal and re­mote clin­i­cal ap­pli­ca­tions. Se­cure mo­bil­ity and re­mote-care de­liv­ery be­tween lo­ca­tions re­quire so­phis­ti­cated iden­tity man­age­ment in­te­grated with a com­pre­hen­sive se­cu­rity so­lu­tion. How­ever, the cost and com­plex­ity of pro­vi­sion­ing and main­tain­ing se­cure Wi-fi ac­cess and VPN con­nec­tiv­ity at re­mote sites is of­ten a bar­rier.

Fortinet iden­ti­fies three dis­tinctly dif­fer­ent WLAN de­ploy­ment models for Health IT or­gan­i­sa­tions to en­able health­care or­gan­i­sa­tions to safely on­board care­givers’ per­sonal de­vices, as well as med­i­cal equip­ment of ev­ery type with­out com­pro­mis­ing se­cu­rity: 1: The In­te­grated Model is based on uni­fied net­work and se­cu­rity man­age­ment tightly in­te­grated on a sin­gle plat­form and man­aged through a sin­gle pane of glass. The in­te­grated op­tion is skewed to­ward ease of oper­a­tion and su­pe­rior vis­i­bil­ity and con­trol through its seam­less in­te­gra­tion of se­cu­rity and wired and wire­less in­fras­truc­ture under a uni­fied man­age­ment in­ter­face. This model best suits health net­works with mul­ti­ple lo­ca­tions. 2: The Con­troller Model is ideal for Health IT or­gan­i­sa­tions that like to man­age net­work­ing and se­cu­rity separately, of­ten us­ing dif­fer­ent ven­dor equip­ment. Wi-fi and se­cu­rity are pro­vided by dif­fer­ent best-of­breed com­po­nents, each man­aged in­de­pen­dently. The WLAN sys­tem uses a chan­nel man­age­ment ap­proach, which en­ables rapid de­ploy­ment and scal­ing, as well as of­fers sev­eral reli­a­bil­ity and traf­fic iso­la­tion ad­van­tages. 3: The Cloud-man­aged Model is pre­ferred by Health IT or­gan­i­sa­tions with a large num­ber of small sites re­quir­ing se­cure wire­less net­works. Se­cu­rity and WLAN con­trol are tightly in­te­grated in a cloud man­age­ment plat­form al­low­ing for cen­tralised man­age­ment and poli­cies with­out the de­ploy­ment of on-premises con­trollers. This model is suit­able for health net­works with many lo­ca­tions such as physi­cian prac­tices, clin­ics, com­mu­nity health cen­ters and as­sisted liv­ing fa­cil­i­ties. “To pro­tect pa­tient data and de­liver the best pos­si­ble care, health net­works need holis­tic, end-to-end cy­ber­se­cu­rity at ev­ery point of care and in ev­ery fa­cil­ity, from clin­ics to hos­pi­tal cam­puses. Health IT or­gan­i­sa­tions can best serve their many and var­ied con­stituents by con­sid­er­ing which WLAN model best meets their or­gan­i­sa­tional needs, with­out com­pro­mis­ing se­cu­rity,” con­cluded Ra­jesh Maurya.

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