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Cybersecurity Risk Factors for Biotech Companies

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The thought of a data breach or other type of cyberattack is enough to keep technology and business professionals up at night, especially if you work for a biotech or other healthcare organization. The data that is stored and utilized by your organization on a daily basis is extremely valuable — not just on the dark web, where you would find personal information — but to your competitors. The potential loss of intellectual property could be staggering to a business, and allow competitors to expand their reach or shift the balance of power in your industry. Biotech firms utilize a large number of connected devices, forming a vast web of information that may be lacking in security at its most basic level.

Protecting Your Connected Devices

Just last week, it surfaced that potentially 2 billion connected devices could be at risk due to 11 vulnerabilities that were found in their operating systems. Six of these threats were considered critical, leading to a wave of publicity around the URGENT/11 security flaws that would allow a complete remote takeover of a device. There were three attack scenarios defined, and some of the devices that were affected at an OS level were within firewalls that were created to keep organizations safe. The thought that attackers can strike at the most humble or complex connected device is a sobering one, especially when you consider the vast scale of this set of threats.

Ensuring Data Security and Compliance

Protecting your data both at rest and while it is in motion are two separate requirements, and data compliance with government regulations adds yet another layer of complexity. Cybercriminals are attentive for any opportunity to hijack vital healthcare information, especially if there’s a possibility that this personally or corporately sensitive data could be sold to the highest bidder. Data compliance is yet another cybersecurity risk for biotech firms, due to the sensitive nature of the personal and healthcare-related information that is being captured and accessed throughout the organization. It’s imperative that you continually review access levels to data and stay up-to-date with the latest patches and security measures on your infrastructure to reduce the possibility of an attack.

Data Connections Are A Point of Vulnerability

While gathering data from partner organizations and working directly with third-party vendors is often a part of life for biotech firms, this could be one of the weakest links in your cybersecurity armor. When you share data with another business, you are trusting that they apply the same — or greater — level of security that you employ in your business. If your partner doesn’t complete the simple tasks such as applying patches in a timely manner, there’s a good possibility that your data could be compromised through no fault of your own. Unfortunately, this risk potential will almost certainly cause some loss to your organization, whether you lose data in an IP grab or lose credibility in the eyes of your customers due to a connected breach.

Cybersecurity and risk management are often cited as two of the greatest challenges for healthcare and biotech companies today, as smaller organizations are not always able to keep track of the required governance and compliance data required by the government. The security and technical professionals at Coretelligent have been working with heavily-regulated organizations such as biotech and pharmaceuticals and understand the steep learning curve associated with this type of work. Contact us today at 855-841-5888 or via email to to learn more about how we can address your core challenges.

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