Medical devices will increasingly be the target of ransomware, according to a US Department of Homeland Security official.
Threats to medical devices are expanding alongside the expansion of Internet of Things technology, according to DHS Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team director Marty Edwards.
“It’s only a matter of time before we see some sort of significant type of events that involve patient safety that are cyber enabled. here have been a lot of healthcare providers and hospitals that have fallen prey to ransomware,” Edwards said at the HIMSS 17 pre-conference symposium in Orlando, according to HealthDataManagement.
Edwards said that its just a matter of time before ransomware moves to embedded devices, and believes this could be the year that such devices get hit by something equivalent with the Stuxnet computer worm, which was credited with causing major damage to Iran’s nuclear program.
“What happens when that moves into the operating room, and you actually cannot use the machinery that you need to and it’s held ransom for so many bitcoins?” Edwards asked at the conference, according to the report.
Yesterday, a new report indicated that malicious malware has been detected on medical devices at major healthcare centers across the world.
San Mateo, Calif.-based cybersecurity firm TrapX Security told Bay Area news outlet ABC 7 it has discovered infected medical devices which could create a backdoor security breach. Such a breach could lead to the leaking of thousands of patients records, according to the report.
The devices on which malware was installed were varied, including x-ray printers, MRI scanners, blood gas analyzers and healthcare-specific picture archiving and communication systems, according to TrapX CEO Greg Enriquez.