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Deep Dive – DICOM: The hidden risks of Legacy Protocols

Your cybersecurity experts

Lieuwe Jan Koning

Co-Founder and CTO ON2IT Group

Jan van Boesschoten

Innovation Manager at AMS-IX

Rob Maas Field CTO

Sina Yazdanmehr

Founder and Managing Director, Aplite GmbH

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DICOM: The hidden risks of Legacy Protocols

How can healthcare systems safely rely on the DICOM protocol, given its significant vulnerabilities to data breaches and manipulation? In this Deep Dive of Threat Talks, we focus on the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) protocol, commonly used in healthcare to manage and transmit medical images. 

DICOM’s widespread use in healthcare brings risks due to its inherent vulnerabilities. Lieuwe Jan Koning, Jan van Boesschoten and our special guest: Sina Yazdanmehr underscore the importance of proactive measures and secure network practices to defend against these evolving threats. Understanding and addressing the weaknesses in legacy systems like DICOM is crucial for enhancing healthcare cybersecurity.

The discussion concludes with practical advice for hospitals and healthcare providers on safeguarding their systems against these hidden threats.

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Episode details:

The Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) protocol is a critical component in healthcare for managing and transmitting medical images. However, research has revealed significant security risks associated with this legacy protocol, with over 60 million healthcare records exposed in just six months.

Lieuwe Jan Koning, Jan van Boesschoten, and our special guest Sina Yazdanmehr discuss the following topics:

⇸ Methods used by attackers to exploit DICOM for accessing and manipulating sensitive patient data.

⇸ The real-world implications of these vulnerabilities on patient care and medical diagnostics.

⇸ Practical advice for healthcare providers to protect their systems and data.

How can hospitals identify if they are at risk? What steps can be taken to secure DICOM servers? Is there a need for nationwide cybersecurity initiatives to safeguard medical data?

This discussion provides valuable insights into the hidden threats posed by legacy protocols in healthcare and offers strategies for enhancing cybersecurity measures.

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