Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Develops A "Smart Transmitter"
On Tuesday, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation announced it will partner with Dexcom, a continuous glucose monitoring system vendor, to develop a "Smart Transmitter" able to communicate with multiple components of a closed –loop artificial pancreas. While there is emphasis on eliminating the wires and making things easier, there is little to no focus on any security implications with the new design.
Wireless is the direction that all medical devices are heading. But vendors need to take security concerns very seriously with these types of devices. The possibility of malicious activity related to these devices may be minimal, however, even the slightest impact is so significant that security has to be made a priority in the engineering phase of all medical devices.
There are also privacy implications with these devices leaking personal information -- especially when talking about tying the device to a cell phone or other type of Internet enabled device.
Whenever security considerations are not taken into account during development and testing, the vulnerabilities that will be found going forward are difficult, and sometimes impossible to remedy. The companies that take a pro-active approach to security in these new medical devices will benefit long term not only in cost, but in safety.