Act Now to Protect Siemens PET/CT Systems
August 21, 2017
The Department of Homeland Security’s Industrial Control System Computer Emergency Response Team (ICS-CERT) has issued an alert related to Siemens’ Molecular Imaging products that run on Windows 7. It can be found here: https://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/advisories/ICSMA-17-215-02.Siemens reports that the vulnerabilities affect the following products: Siemens PET/CT Systems: All Windows 7-based versions,Siemens SPECT/CT Systems: All Windows 7-based versions,Siemens SPECT Systems: All Windows 7-based versions, andSiemens SPECT Workplaces/net: All Windows 7-based versions.Siemens is preparing updates for the affected products. The identified vulnerabilities may allow a hacker to remotely execute an arbitrary code. The impact of such an attack depends on many factors that are unique to each organization. Recommendations from SiemensOrganizations that use these Siemens products should evaluate the impact of these vulnerabilities based on their operational environment and specific clinic usage. An attacker with low skill would be able to exploit these vulnerabilities. While Siemens prepares an update, it is advised to run the identified product in a dedicated network segment and protected IT environment. If this is not possible, Siemens recommends the following: If patient safety and treatment is not at risk, disconnect the product from the network and use in standalone mode.Reconnect the product only after the provided patch or remediation is installed on the system. Siemens is able to patch systems capable of Remote Update Handling (RUH) much faster by remote software distribution compared to onsite visits. Therefore users of RUH-capable equipment are recommended to clarify the situation concerning patch availability and remaining risk in the local customer network with the Siemens Customer Care Center first and then to reconnect the systems in order to receive patches as quickly as possible via RUH. This ensures smooth and fast receipt of updates and therefore supports reestablishment of system operations.In addition, Siemens recommends: Ensure users have appropriate backups and system restoration procedures.For specific patch and remediation guidance information contact a local Siemens customer service engineer or a Siemens regional support center.For more information on these vulnerabilities and more detailed mitigation instructions, please see Siemens Security Advisory SSA-822184 at the following location: https://www.siemens.com/cert/en/cert-security-advisories.htm. Recommendations from ICS-CERTIn addition to the recommendations Siemens has made, ICS-CERT recommends that users take proactive measures to minimize the risk of exploitation of these vulnerabilities. Specifically, users should: Minimize network exposure for all medical devices and/or systems, and ensure that they are not accessible from the Internet.Locate all medical devices and remote devices behind firewalls, and isolate them from the business network.When remote access is required, use secure methods, such as Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), recognizing that VPNs may have vulnerabilities and should be updated to the most current version available. Also recognize that VPN is only as secure as the connected devices.ICS-CERT also provides a section for security recommended practices on the ICS-CERT web page at http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/content/recommended-practices. Always a good time to assess HIPAA Security policiesThis alert is a reminder that not only should health care organizations with the affected Siemens devices consider the implications of their HIPAA Security policies and procedures. This matter should serve as a reminder to all to take the time to consider their HIPAA policies and perform a risk assessment to ensure that the security risk analysis does not need any updates and whether there are any new vulnerabilities identified since the last assessment. Health care entities and providers should also be sure that they have backup procedures in place to minimize the effects of a hacking incident. ICS-CERT also reminds users that additional mitigation guidance and recommended practices are publicly available in the ICS-CERT Technical Information Paper, ICS-TIP-12-146-01B–Targeted Cyber Intrusion Detection and Mitigation Strategies, that is available for download from the ICS-CERT web site (http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/).