Cybersecurity researchers warn against vaccine supply chain attacks

Cybercriminals, who are well known for taking advantage of whatever opportunity, are not surprisingly targeting the vaccination program rollout. According to reports, numerous hackers are now aiming at the vaccine supply chain.

While exploit vulnerabilities are rising with the emergence of remote work in the new normal, the global healthcare industry is also seeing a drastic rise in ransomware attacks. Black Book Research analysts even warn of a trifold increase in the volume of such attacks this year.

Cyberattack target

Attackers are seen to be targeting the technology that covers vaccine program rollouts, particularly the scheduling platforms, which in turn are likely to contain personal information. Analysts warn of possible financial losses when cybercriminals target the healthcare industry, including the vaccine supply chain. At the same time, it puts the overall safety of patients at risk as hackers tend to leak private information elsewhere.

Thus, many experts recommend some ways to manage the vaccine supply chain. The first recommendation is to identify and catalog the risks across the system development life cycle—including manufacturing, design, production, acquisition, distribution, installation, maintenance, operations, and decommissioning. Solutions must be developed per identified risk and alternative measures must be created for each link in the chain.

Online safety

Another recommendation is the integration of network and security strategies to attain consistency and predictability amid unprecedented demands. Healthcare industry leaders must meet increased safety needs coming with the massive surge in device usage, cloud services, and network demands related to vaccination programs.

Based on research by the FortiGuard Labs, web browsers and Internet of Things (IoT) devices will continue to be popular targets for cyberattacks amid the rise of hacking attempts related to vaccine programs. Thus, healthcare security professionals should continue to be effective in safekeeping critical health supplies and equipment.

Enterprise security provider Fortinet recommends cybersecurity solutions that require careful supply chain examination, risk management plan creation, and consistent and diligent implementation.