Network and Security Challenges of Healthcare

Healthcare organizations deliver critical, life-saving treatment that is heavily dependent upon the availability of electronic patient records. Simply stated, when electronic records are not available due to network or security issues, the quality of patient care declines. Further complicating matters is the need to keep patient records secure and confidential to comply with HIPAA regulations. 

As in other industries, traditional network troubleshooting and security efforts for healthcare organizations demand vast amounts of time and resources, as IT teams manually comb through logs, manage a multitude of host agents and perform frequent signature updates. Additionally, since the FDA has strict guidelines for making changes to any system that is used in patient care, it is more difficult to patch infected systems in healthcare organizations than it is in other industries, making more proactive, automated security measures even more crucial. 

StealthWatch Provides End-to-End Network Visibility 

Lancope’s StealthWatch System unifies flow-based security, network and application performance monitoring to streamline workflows and provide more comprehensive visibility and protection. By analyzing NetFlow and other flow data from existing routers and switches, StealthWatch provides the actionable insight needed to troubleshoot a wide range of network, application and security issues across the entire network – dramatically reducing the time from problem onset to resolution. 

Because StealthWatch leverages existing infrastructure and combines network and security functionality into a single platform, it provides a comprehensive range of capabilities at a fraction of the cost of traditional solutions. StealthWatch is scalable to meet the needs of even the largest networks, and can also monitor and protect virtual networks, enabling organizations to embrace innovative IT trends while still maintaining control over network performance and security. 

StealthWatch’s application awareness helps ensure that healthcare professionals experience high levels of performance from mission-critical technologies such as Epic, Lawson and Cerner. Because many healthcare organizations rely on these technologies to manage the entire lifecycle of patient care, 24/7 access and optimum performance are crucial. 

StealthWatch helps satisfy the following HIPAA requirements: 

  • 164.308 (a) (1) (i) - StealthWatch detects malicious activity, continuously monitoring the network and prioritizing issues in order of greatest risk. 
  • 164.308 (1) (6) - StealthWatch unifies security, network and application performance monitoring to quickly focus resources on the top issues and provide a clear, understandable window into what is going on inside the network. 
  • 164.312 (a) (1) - StealthWatch tracks user activity across the entire network, providing accountability for user actions. 
  • 164.312 (c) (1) and 164.312 (e) (1) - StealthWatch alarms on unauthorized host access and the use of services and ports not necessary for normal business operations. 

StealthWatch Addresses Healthcare Challenges

Lancope’s StealthWatch system collects and analyzes flow data to detect host and network anomalies, delivering numerous benefits for both network and security operations.

  • Demonstrate Compliance 
    Through constant, comprehensive monitoring, and advanced features such as application and identity awareness, StealthWatch helps healthcare organizations demonstrate compliance with HIPAA and other industry regulations.
  • Increase Network Availability & Performance
    StealthWatch provides an end-to-end view of what is happening across the network to assist in maintaining high availability and performance.
  • Improve Security
    To improve security posture, StealthWatch rapidly detects and prioritizes suspicious and malicious host and network behaviors such as cyber attacks, rogue servers, policy violations and unauthorized access and services.
  • Deliver Network & Application-Level Visibility
    In addition to monitoring and analyzing network traffic, StealthWatch also provides application level visibility to help healthcare organizations determine exactly where issues are stemming from and which systems/services are affected. It also helps to identify and stop application usage that puts the organization at risk, as well as ensure maximum uptime and performance for mission critical applications that store and deliver patient records.
  • Track User Identity & Increase Accountability
    StealthWatch automatically ties all host and network activity to IP, username and systems involved so that the root cause of issues can be tracked all the way down to the exact user.
  • Streamline Workflows​
    StealthWatch streamlines network and security workflows through a few, centrally located and administered appliances that require minimal system upkeep, no host agents, no signature updates and no need to manually comb through vast amounts of traffic logs to pinpoint the source of issues.