Sunday, September 6, 2015

Connected Networks and Mobile Device Security

As more healthcare and SMB organizations are connected to networks, it is imperative that they have security measures in place for both the network and mobile devices connected to the network. Data breaches are becoming more common, particularly where there are no network security policies or mobile device management plan in place.

Mobile devices in the workplace are good and could create more efficient, effective and satisfied employees, however they also could create a host of challenges. There are a lot of connected services; Telehealth and Telepresence, VoIP, servers, desktops, etc... and all can be accessed from mobile devices. Due to the interconnection of networks and the lack of security and encryption on these networks, information flowing over these networks through the various devices could be compromised.

Hospitals/clinics and SMB's should ensure that this increased inter-connectivity does not put their organizations at risk. One way to do this is through mobile device management software. However, even before implementing a MDM solution, particularly in healthcare and financial services, organizations need to ensure the network connecting these devices is secure. A private network, like HealthNet connect|BroadNet connect (HNcBNc), has total control over the security of the network vs a typical carrier network.

Organizations have to look beyond the walls of their own infrastructure and work with their network provider to ensure proper network security policies and service level agreements are place. Keep in mind that an organization's ecosystem extends beyond the server room and the responsibility to secure that ecosystem rest with the organization...not the network provider or the mobile device provider.

Once a policy is in place, there are a few things organizations can do to ensure compliance:

  • Conduct regular Risk Assessments
  • Employee, patient and visitor communication and training relative to the policy and need for compliance
  • Consistent monitoring of network and device infrastructure and incident reporting

The Internet of Things (IoT) or connected networks and devices are here to stay. Understanding how that information flow and putting security policies and processes in place to protect that information is critical to the survival of any organization.

Rodney Brown

Mr. Brown brings extensive experience building companies and leading sales, operations and service organizations in technology and healthcare. He is the Executive Director of HealthNet connect and CEO of HNcBNc.

The views and opinions on this blog are my own.

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