In a relatively short time, the Internet of Things (IoT) has substantially changed health care. Connected devices allow older people to age in place safely for as long as possible and help doctors confer with specialists across the world about complex cases and monitor patients’ chronic diseases between office visits. But as with any technology, IoT also brings with it challenges to be overcome. Here are some challenges facing health care in 2019 along with suggestions for what practitioners should keep in mind when they use health care IoT devices in their workplaces.
IoT Devices Increase Available Attack Surfaces
The vast possibilities for using IoT devices in health care have its own vulnerabilities concern as well. The number of ways hackers could infiltrate the system and mine for the most valuable data only increases as device use rises. A Zingbox study identified a new risk which enables hackers to learn about how a connected medical device operates by getting into the system and reading its error logs. The knowledge gained by hackers could facilitate breaking into a hospital network or making devices publish incorrect readings that influence patient care. However, Zinbox’s research also showed the positive side, which is the progress in vendors, providers, and manufacturers’ willingness to collaborate. By reinforcing standards and normalizing secure protocols, those shared efforts could reduce patient risks by closing the gaps that can form between the layers of an IoT system. We know that it’s not possible to know all the cybersecurity risks health organizations may face in 2019. As a result, the facilities planning to implement IoT technology must take care to increase awareness of existing threats and understand how to protect networks and gadgets from hackers’ efforts.
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