A security expert has claimed that the use of many medical implants for treating condition such as diabetes are open to possible attack that could seriously affect the health of users.
To demonstrate how implants could be potentially abused, the research showed a range of potential threats that locate and compromise the devices, such as scanning and compromising wireless insulin pumps and identifying a radio signal that could turn off a heart defibrillator if re-broadcast.
The report recommend that manufacturers do more to ensure the implants are secure from attack, especially as the use of such devices including pacemakers
to monitor heart beats, insulin pumps and defibrillators that guard against abnormal cardiac rhythms are becoming more common. There are concerns over how easy it is to identify the radio signal of implanted defibrillators, with these signals used to turn the device on and off, and that there was little in the way of authentication or encryption to protect the signals.
Barnaby Jack, who is a researcher at the security firm McAfee, has warned that that the medical implants have wireless links meaning they are vulnerable to attack. He said “We can influence any pump within a 300ft range. We can make that pump dispense its entire 300 unit reservoir of insulin and we can do that without requiring its ID number.”

Get our free newsletters

Stay up to date with the latest news, research and breakthroughs.

You May Also Like

Twice daily dairy intakes could reduce type 2 diabetes risk

Eating cheese, yoghurt or eggs twice a day could help lower the…

Public Health England considers low carb approach for type 2 diabetes

The low carb approach is being considered by the government to be…

Top diabetes professor drafts risk assessment document for frontline COVID-19 staff

The health and wellbeing of frontline NHS staff has been prioritised among…