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By 27 March 2020 | Categories: news

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In previous world wars, it was soldiers, often young men really, who were on the frontlines. But in the latest invisible war, a conflict with a virus that cant be seen with one’s eyes, and that strikes with impunity, it is the healthcare workers who are at the frontlines of danger.

Thus, it is heartening to see companies step up in a bid to help. Kaspersky, for example, has announced the free availability of its core endpoint security products for medical organisations, in order to help them stay protected from cyberthreats during the pandemic. The full list of B2B products available for free for six months includes Kaspersky Endpoint Security Cloud Plus, Kaspersky Security for Microsoft Office 365, Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business Advanced and Kaspersky Hybrid Cloud Security.

The cybersecurity company explained that continuity of operations and data protection is extremely critical for healthcare organisations. This is especially true in the current situation, when medical organisations are under extreme pressure and have to mobilise all their forces to help people in this very challenging time. For hospitals and medical institutions it is important to ensure the stability of medical equipment and that data is constantly available for medical personnel, while also protecting the privacy of their patients’ critical information. 

 “In this critical situation, healthcare institutions are under immense pressure and carry huge responsibility while saving people’s lives and fighting against the infection. Doctors, nurses and all medical staff take on most of the load and therefore need any support possible. We feel that it is our duty to support the medical community,” said Evgeniya Naumova, Vice President of the Global Sales Network at Kaspersky. “In order to help these organisations focus on what matters most, we now offer healthcare institutions free licenses for key Kaspersky corporate products for a six month period.”

Along with this initiative, Kaspersky also suggests that medical institutions follow cybersecurity practices and implement the following measures as soon as possible:

  1. Schedule basic security awareness education for both medical personnel and administration employees – it should cover the most essential practices such as passwords and accounts, email security, use of USB devices, PC security and safe web browsing. Explain to the hospital’s staff that there is an increasing risk of cyberthreats for healthcare IT systems.
  2. It is the right time to check the hospital’s protection solution, make sure it is up to date, configured properly and covers all employees’ devices. Switch on a firewall to enable protection from threats coming from the internet. The security solution should enable protection from ransomware as it is one of the common threats for medical organisations.
  3. Ensure all specific medical devices are properly configured and updated, such as ventilators. If there is a chance that the number of such devices increases rapidly, develop a dedicated procedure to quickly install and configure all new devices.
  4. Some hospitals urgently hire new staff which means growing the number of endpoints, including new employees’ personal devices. This can damage visibility and control over corporate IT, so IT services should pay special attention to adding protection to these new devices. It’s better to have security profiles, policies and licenses in advance to just add them to new devices when needed.

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