News in the Channel - issue #16



of cloud networking products tailored to the unique needs of the healthcare sector,” he says. “It’s important that the NHS can scale its operations efficiently. This is crucial for healthcare providers as they face increasing patient numbers and the need to expand onsite and offsite services. Therefore, the NHS must choose networking solutions designed to support this scalability, enabling it and supporting healthcare organisations to manage and store vast amounts of data securely and efficiently. By facilitating easy access to patient records, diagnostic images and other critical information, the latest networking technology helps streamline patient care processes and can improve overall operational performance. “Networking solutions need to be able to address these issues head-on with reliable connectivity, advanced encryption and secure access controls. Only network solutions providers committed to security and reliability can help ensure that healthcare organisations are able to protect sensitive patient data against cyber threats and comply with regulatory standards, all while maintaining continuous day-to-day IT operations. Trevor Dearing, director of critical infrastructure at Illumio, says that it can be a challenge for healthcare organisations to scale the complexity of network hardware and cybersecurity solutions because they can contradict each other. “Hardware, networking, data processing and database infrastructure allows healthcare organisations to scale performance, whereas security solutions need to scale and adapt to changes in the healthcare environment in a way hardware cannot. “A significant proportion of healthcare organisations still operate with physical processes, for example patient records on paper, and are only now starting to move to more efficient systems, such as electronic patient records. It’s important that during this digital transformation phase, healthcare organisations also transform security, and, more critically, at the same rate. Similar to cloud environments, security needs to be scalable, this requires solutions which are more dynamic than traditional security technologies.” Trevor adds that healthcare technology is changing to provide more integrated care and remote services, so security needs to reflect this. “Healthcare organisations need a robust system that ensures operational uptime but is also flexible enough to provide real-time access to systems and data as the healthcare

organisation’s requirements and networks change,” he says. “Security needs to be independent from the network infrastructure to ensure when the hospital’s infrastructure changes, cyber resilience is maintained. “Healthcare organisations usually have very limited budgets and resources, so they are looking for solutions to address multiple issues. Therefore, resellers will need to provide different solutions in just one offer. As a result, resellers should look towards solutions that provide a zero trust approach. Through Zero Trust Segmentation, organisations can provide the scalability and flexibility needed during digital transformation, but also segment and contain attacks at the point of entry to protect critical assets or sensitive data.” Richard adds that increasingly devices will need to be locked down to individual ports, protocols and destination IP addresses that are specifically authorised. “We know if it needs to communicate with this machine or that system,” he says. “We can even lock it down further so that it only can be communicated with via certain active directory user identities; such as those who are permitted to administer an X-ray system or a CT scan or whatever the device happens to be. “We can get down towards more zero trust principles. Healthcare is beginning to embrace zero trust principles, not just at the user level, but we’re moving more towards mandatory access controls, like the sort of thing you would see in the military, where you have access to certain systems and certain data based upon your role within the hospital hierarchy.” IoT headaches IoT, or IoMT devices, which, as mentioned, are increasingly being used in healthcare settings, are also providing security headaches that

Alan Jones

Similar to cloud environments, security needs to be scalable, this requires solutions which are more dynamic than traditional security technologies. “ ”

Trevor Dearing


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