Cyber and network security threats continue to be a key risk factor in the veterinary practice and have led to major losses in recent times when data has been compromised. On a personal level, veterinary practices are also at risk of their data being compromised, erased, stolen, or even sold in the dark web after unauthorized access, further highlighting how the handling of data has become a major concern in the field.
A singular veterinary clinic attack resulting from a cybersecurity threat means loss of valuable data and financial losses for the business establishment. As a practice that deals with health, the concept of ‘ prevention is better than cure’ is ingrained in most of these practices and hence it is important to know how, as a practice, such risks can be reduced or eradicated. This can be done using Information Technology tools developed for the sole purpose of keeping data safe.
Important cybersecurity and network security tools for veterinary hospitals and practices.
Antivirus tools with malware protection
Computer virus and malware are sometimes used interchangeably to describe small pieces of software that are installed on a computer without a user’s knowledge or approval and that are meant to compromise the security of a computer. However, malware is a broader term for malicious software, whereas viruses are specific types of malware that self-replicate by inserting their own codes on computer systems.
Viruses and malware pose a very significant risk for veterinary hospitals because they are easy to attack and less likely to detect.
However, tools such as antivirus and anti-malware protection are able to scan through a computer system, identify viruses and other malware that have been installed in a computer system and isolate or delete these programs.
For a veterinary practice, the damages such as loss of data, data encryption and a computer system being held captive by ransomware ( a type of malware), can be prevented by ensuring that all your computer systems have the latest antivirus and anti-malware protection. Especially when the antivirus is AI, machine learning and kernel based.
With the Lucca cyber security suite you get a layered protection that is AI, machine learning and kernel based. Allowing Lucca to easily isolate an infected PC on the network to stop the spread of the virus. While simultaneously restoring your PC back to it’s original health. It’s like mask wearing and social distancing for your computers.
Secure operating systems
Operating systems form the gateways with which we are able to communicate with computer system hardware and get them to do tasks that run our day to day work in our veterinary practices.
However, operating systems can also be compromised and may have security issues that can put data at risk. As a tool that veterinary practices interact with on a daily basis, it is therefore important to ensure that they are safe and do not pose any security threat.
This can be done by ensuring that operating systems are always updated with the latest security patches. It is also important to have the latest operating systems that include support from its manufacturers.
When you deploy the Lucca Cyber Security suite. Lucca ensures that all your computers and servers are always up to date on the latest security updates. Which sometimes come out daily! Allowing you to rest assured that there aren’t any security holes in your network.
Secure email services
Email services are part of veterinary practice as a form of communication. They are also used in the day to day running of veterinary hospitals, where all the staff and clients are able to interact with each other, therefore ensuring that the practice is running successfully.
Emails contain some of the most sensitive data for any business, especially veterinary practitioners. Therefore, it is important to ensure that this regular product is secure and cannot easily be compromised.
Secure email services ensure that your emails are safe and protect them from future attacks. A good secure email service must have the ability to encrypt your emails, limit forwarding and use two-factor authentication to send and receive emails. Spam filters and the ability to identify viruses and phishing sites are also important aspects of cybersecurity tools that come with good service providers that veterinary practices must consider when deciding on which email services they should use.
With the Lucca Post Master service; Lucca sniffs every email looking for viruses and potential threats that threaten your hospital. Lucca automatically prevents known bad email senders that she has found at other veterinary hospitals. Lucca sends you a warning on messages she unsure about and would like you to review. The moment any veterinary practice using the Lucca Post Master service finds or reports a threat to Lucca, she automatically enables that protection to your hospital as well. Allowing veterinary hospitals all across north America to work together to keep each other safe.
State of the art Firewalls
Firewalls are an important part of network systems and help in filtering out suspicious traffic in a network. Users of a firewall are able to update their settings on how they want to detect such traffic and how to proceed in case traffic is deemed suspicious in a network.
Firewalls can also keep count of connection attempts in a network, deny or grant access to your network for computers trying to connect to it, and prevent access to certain websites based on instructions given.
Veterinary practices need firewalls to ensure that no unauthorized persons are accessing their network and accessing data.
However, one caveat that veterinary practices have to keep in mind while choosing a firewall is that it can be compromised. Sophisticated hackers are able to go around firewalls and access data unauthorized. This is especially true for firewalls that are not set correctly or built to protect large, sophisticated networks.
Penetration testing is one of the most important practices that is used to test whether a network is safe for usage. Cybersecurity professionals use all the techniques used by malicious hackers to test a network if it can withstand a hacking attempt. In case vulnerabilities are found, these professionals are able to find solutions to these problems and fix them.
Penetration testing can come in handy, especially for large veterinary hospitals that are prone to attacks by hackers. It can help them come up with good cybersecurity and network security policies that can safeguard their data.
Are you curious to find out how safe your network is? Let Lucca perform an IT health assessment against your network to find your gaps!
Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) Services
PKI services, which include tools such as Transport Layer Security (TLS) and its successor Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), help servers to communicate safely. These tools are important for web browsing and internal networks and can be used in veterinary hospitals to improve their network security.
Usage of PKI services ensures that your network has multi-factor authentication, has trusted digital signatures, emails and communication from your network are encrypted, gives users the ability to digitally sign and protect code and also help in ensuring that there are trust and identity in an Internet of Things (IoT) network.
These tools are important for veterinary hospitals who have an internet presence and ensure that their clients’ data is always protected.
When yoou deploy the Lucca Cyber Security suite. Lucca also protects your web traffic and helps to notify you when a website has been compromised. This doesn’t mean the site contains something imoral (but she can block those sites from entering your hospital as well). It could be an industry partner site that has been hacked and the partner is unaware. Allowing Lucca to notify the industry partner to help keep veterinary hospitals every where safe.
Remote monitoring software
These tools give IT teams of a veterinary hospital an opportunity to monitor, configure, diagnose and collect information about a network remotely. The tool comes in handy when you have different clinics that are decentralized. It gives IT experts the ability to handle arising network security matters even when they are far from their place of work.
With the rise in CSRs and doctors working remotely. Its more important than ever to make sure your hospital and your staff are safe. The good news is; when you deploy Lucca to your hospital she can keep an eye on your pack no matter how far away they may be.
These tools will give a veterinary practitioner the ability to monitor and filter out websites that they deem inappropriate for their practice. Proxies also allow users to monitor the sites being visited, limits access to external networks, and filtering rules can be adjusted according to veterinary hospitals’ guidelines to ensure that workers are not using their time to go to prohibited sites.
These tools are important in ensuring that the security of a veterinary practice is always guaranteed. If you would like to schedule a consultation with Lucca to see what is needed to enable you to make informed decisions about the type of network security you need to set up for your practice.
Please contact our Director of Veterinary Date Security, Clint Latham J.D., at Clint@lucca.vet or call (720) 316 – 8344