Press Release

Southeast NHS Trust signs new healthcare IoT cybersecurity deal

Mon 25 Sep 2023

One of the largest hospital trusts in North Kent, Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust, has signed a new three-year agreement with healthcare IoT cybersecurity provider Cylera. The Trust serves a local population of 500,000 people.

The agreement comes as the NHS remains a key target for malicious activity from cybercriminals around the world focused on national infrastructure systems and on disrupting essential services.

Steve Brigden, Head of Cylera UK and Ireland, said: “It is a pleasure to continue our relationship with the team at Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust. Healthcare settings across the country are investing in new digital strategies as they take strategic steps to streamline services.”

Only recently, two NHS Ambulance Trusts, the South Western Ambulance Service Foundation Trust, and the South Central Ambulance Service Trust, reported breaches that affected NHS workers’ access to patient records.

According to reports, attacks on the healthcare sector globally are on the rise, increasing 60% in 2022 compared to the year before. Healthcare organisations around the world experience on average 1,426 attacks per week, with an estimated cost of £7.8 million per successful breach.

“Investment in our digital infrastructure is fundamental as we continue our drive to provide better care for patients,” said Gary Hickinson, Head of IT at Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust.

The Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust is home to over 11,000 connected medical and IoT devices and other equipment used for patient care and building management operations.

Hickinson continued: “Over the next few years our digital landscape will continue to develop, with new medical devices and systems coming online.”

Like many healthcare settings across the country that are adopting technology to help improve and streamline services to patients, the Trust has more than doubled its connected devices over the last three to four years, up from 5,000 to the current 11,000.

Healthcare IoT cybersecurity solutions enable the Trust to have full visibility into all connected medical devices, IoT, and other systems on the network. They provide full, accurate, and live profiles of each and every device, allowing the team to better manage the maintenance of this equipment, assess any potential risks, and proactively work with our suppliers and vendors to ensure any vulnerabilities are mitigated quickly and effectively.

“As our hospital environments become more connected, it is vital that we have in place the best systems to help protect what matters most – our patients and staff,” added Hickinson.

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