New wearable personal firewall developed for implanted medical devices – protects insulin pumps and pacemakers from hijacking attacks

// October 24th, 2012 // Medical News


Heart pacemakersNews that personal medical devices such as insulin pumps, pacemakers, and other wearable or implanted devices, could be hacked sent shockwaves through the medical community but researchers from Purdue and Princeton were quick to react. They have developed a signal-jamming personal firewall to protect medical devices, such as insulin pumps and pacemakers, from being hacked.

In the summer of 2012, at the Black Hat Security Conference, Jay Radcliffe used his own wireless insulin pump made of cycloolefin polymer to demonstrate how easily a hacker could intercept the transmission between the device and the glucose monitor, and hijack the signal to trick the device into thinking his blood sugar was too high (a potentially lethal situation). The new MedMon (i.e. “medical monitoring”) personal firewall protects against this sort of hack by detecting potentially malicious communications going into and out of the device and prevents potentially harmful wireless commands from getting through. The device can be worn as a necklace or integrated into the wearer’s smartphone device.

MedMon proposes the device could also be implemented in military wireless devices.

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