Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Threat Intelligence

3/8/2019
12:30 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
LinkedIn
Google+
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Ultrasound Machine Diagnosed with Major Security Gaps

Check Point researchers investigate security risks and point to implications for medical IoT devices.

RSA CONFERENCE 2019 – San Francisco – Vulnerabilities in connected medical devices could have massive implications for patients and the healthcare industry as a whole.

The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) is poised to broaden the attack surface for healthcare organizations, according to Check Point experts. Eighty-seven percent of healthcare institutions are expected to use IoT technologies by the end of 2019, with nearly 650 million IoMT devices in use by 2020, states a new Check Point study. The study underscores the danger of what could happen if these devices are poorly secured.

IoT devices collect vast stores of data and are commonly built on outdated software and legacy operating systems. This makes them a simple gateway for cybercriminals, who could break in and move laterally across the target network.

Consider ultrasound technology. Researchers explain how "huge advancements" have been made to provide detailed health data to doctors and patients. Unfortunately, they report, this innovation hasn't made its way to the security of IT environments where ultrasound machines sit. To prove this point, they went "under the hood" of a real ultrasound device.

What they found was a tool running on Windows 2000. Like many IoMT devices, this no longer receives updates or patches, and leaves both the machine and its data exposed to intruders. It wasn't hard to exploit vulnerabilities and access its database of ultrasound images, they explain.

An attacker with this access could launch a ransomware campaign on the hospital system or swap patients' images. "Think how much chaos that can do in the hospital," said Oded Vanunu, head of product vulnerability research at Check Point, in an interview with Dark Reading here at the RSA Conference.

Cybercriminals may use health records to get pricey medical services and prescription medications; they may also gain access to government health benefits. Or they could sell it: The Ponemon Institute found healthcare breaches are most expensive, at $408 per record.

Healthcare organizations often don't have the budget for strong IT and security, Vanunu explained. "Hospitals are flat networks – from our perspective ... we think cybercrime will start to move to the weakest networks." It's happening already, he noted.

IoMT devices are in mass production, Vanunu continued, but nothing is being done to secure them. Because the device Check Point analyzed was running Windows 2000, exploiting it was simple. "We didn't use any sophisticated tools," Vanunu said. "No zero-day, no reverse-engineering vulnerability. Any beginner can exploit it."

Related Content:

 

 

Join Dark Reading LIVE for two cybersecurity summits at Interop 2019. Learn from the industry's most knowledgeable IT security experts. Check out the Interop agenda here.

Kelly Sheridan is the Staff Editor at Dark Reading, where she focuses on cybersecurity news and analysis. She is a business technology journalist who previously reported for InformationWeek, where she covered Microsoft, and Insurance & Technology, where she covered financial ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
REISEN1955
50%
50%
REISEN1955,
User Rank: Ninja
3/11/2019 | 2:27:18 PM
Re: On healthcare in general
Thanks - worst job ever.  30 computers walked out of a locked room - 30.  Just like that.  Computer in Pastor's office stolen.  Computer in corp cafeteria stolen- cable cut too.  11,000 endpoints - no firewall.  We would image and porn back in a week.  Doctor lounge systems loaded with porn.  Education systems for chilldren loaded with porn.  (Outsourced suppor to First Consulting group, later bought by Computer Sciences Corp.)

There was one more slice of hell - hard-coded IPs and subnets.  But nobody knew where one subnet began in a room and the next kicked in.  Delihtful planning.  

 
RyanSepe
50%
50%
RyanSepe,
User Rank: Ninja
3/8/2019 | 3:35:39 PM
Re: On healthcare in general
Wow, thats disheartening. Working at a hospital I have seen the horrors that COW's can provide as well. I still think your experience would have to top the list I think.
REISEN1955
50%
50%
REISEN1955,
User Rank: Ninja
3/8/2019 | 1:40:33 PM
On healthcare in general
Ages ago i had a positon with a MAJOR NY Hospital for support.  One uptown hospital had COWS ( computers on wheels) that staff could wheel into a patient's room.  They are quite common.  Now ths place was a horror show in many ways but one great one was that COWS wireless received IP from the college across the street.  True.  Out the door went the patient management cloud program.  Out went patient data and history, medication data, care data....... and that was one, just one, flaw.  Not surprised at all by this essay. 
Mobile Banking Malware Up 50% in First Half of 2019
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  1/17/2020
Exploits Released for As-Yet Unpatched Critical Citrix Flaw
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  1/13/2020
Microsoft to Officially End Support for Windows 7, Server 2008
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  1/13/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
The Year in Security: 2019
This Tech Digest provides a wrap up and overview of the year's top cybersecurity news stories. It was a year of new twists on old threats, with fears of another WannaCry-type worm and of a possible botnet army of Wi-Fi routers. But 2019 also underscored the risk of firmware and trusted security tools harboring dangerous holes that cybercriminals and nation-state hackers could readily abuse. Read more.
Flash Poll
[Just Released] How Enterprises are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
[Just Released] How Enterprises are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
Organizations have invested in a sweeping array of security technologies to address challenges associated with the growing number of cybersecurity attacks. However, the complexity involved in managing these technologies is emerging as a major problem. Read this report to find out what your peers biggest security challenges are and the technologies they are using to address them.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-7227
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-18
Westermo MRD-315 1.7.3 and 1.7.4 devices have an information disclosure vulnerability that allows an authenticated remote attacker to retrieve the source code of different functions of the web application via requests that lack certain mandatory parameters. This affects ifaces-diag.asp, system.asp, ...
CVE-2019-15625
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-18
A memory usage vulnerability exists in Trend Micro Password Manager 3.8 that could allow an attacker with access and permissions to the victim's memory processes to extract sensitive information.
CVE-2019-19696
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-18
A RootCA vulnerability found in Trend Micro Password Manager for Windows and macOS exists where the localhost.key of RootCA.crt might be improperly accessed by an unauthorized party and could be used to create malicious self-signed SSL certificates, allowing an attacker to misdirect a user to phishi...
CVE-2019-19697
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-18
An arbitrary code execution vulnerability exists in the Trend Micro Security 2019 (v15) consumer family of products which could allow an attacker to gain elevated privileges and tamper with protected services by disabling or otherwise preventing them to start. An attacker must already have administr...
CVE-2019-20357
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-18
A Persistent Arbitrary Code Execution vulnerability exists in the Trend Micro Security 2020 (v160 and 2019 (v15) consumer familiy of products which could potentially allow an attacker the ability to create a malicious program to escalate privileges and attain persistence on a vulnerable system.