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Safeguarding Healthcare Servers and Data Security with KVM Switches

Why hardware beats software when it comes to protecting operations and patient data.

As healthcare institutions become increasingly digital, their valuable data and operations are at greater risk, but hardware-level solutions can provide enhanced protection.

The healthcare industry is quickly adopting new technologies as it transitions to a digital future, and as such its attack surface is growing and making it more vulnerable to cyber security threat actors. It’s not only mission-critical medical equipment and clear data visualization that requires features such as fast access and high-quality video; it’s the entire healthcare IT infrastructure that needs safeguarding. The number of attacks on healthcare institutions grew by 55% in the US in 2020 and affected more than 26 million patient records as a result. The majority of these breaches, or 67.3%, came as a result of hacking and other IT incidents. Thankfully there are hardware solutions that can stop threat actors in their tracks.

In this article we’ll explore the key benefits of secure KVM (Keyboard-Video-Mouse) switches to ensure safe connectivity and optimize management of a group of computers or servers and prevent cyber attacks.

How to safeguard healthcare data at the hardware level

The first step is to limit physical access to the server room. The second step is to limit access and implement monitoring at the hardware level. At the same time, it is important to give IT managers the flexibility to access servers from anywhere.

This is where a KVM switch can help. The key benefits of using a KVM switch are:

1. Secure access: KVM switches are dedicated switching devices designed to avoid unauthorized access, guarantee data isolation, and are optimized for accessing computers at various security and authority levels.

2. Multiple computers / server control: Users get quick, easy access to multiple PCs or servers from a single workstation, be it an LCD console in a rack, a browser on a remote computer, a dedicated console or centralized management software.

3. Remote access: KVM over IP switches allow access within a local or worldwide network. Registered users have different access levels and simultaneous access can be allowed to operate the various servers independently.

4. Activity surveillance: Panel array mode allows for monitoring of all computers in a single view.

5. Peripheral support: Some KVM switches allow USB peripherals, for instance, removing the need for discrete USB hubs.

Healthcare data safety solutions with ATEN

With ATEN KVM switches, healthcare IT administrators can manage their server rooms and data centers from practically anywhere – while ensuring full data security.

On-site access only

A device such as the KH1532A KVM switch is designed with powerful features including panel array mode that allow administrators to manage their entire server room easily and quickly. It centralizes access to 32 servers and can only be used on-premises. If you’re looking for a KVM switch with a built-in LCD console, CL3884NW is the right option. On top of the usual KVM features, it supports instant multi-view (monitoring 4 servers on 1 display). Save space with this all-in-one device for on-site access.

On- and off-site access for various users

Similarly the KN8132V KVM switch offers remote connection over IP. It supports FIPS 140-2 level-1 security standards and allows up to nine IT managers to simultaneously access the KVM switch to work on servers. Combine this device with a dedicated remote workstation to minimize malicious access.

The ATEN KN8132V KVM over IP switch allows for secure remote access of servers in healthcare institutions.

Similar to the ATEN KN series, the KL1116V LCD KVM switch also supports high-security standards and off-site access. In addition, a switch such as this one can be associated with ATEN PDU devices so that server admins can control power management of their servers and improve power usage.

Control center video session recording (CCVSR) is an innovative solution designed for live monitoring and operation backtracking. With it you can also view recorded user session videos and activity lists to track changes made for compliance control enhancement and auditing efficiency. As soon as a user starts a session, CCVSR records their activity, including logging in and out, key strokes and mouse clicks, and the video display itself. If a threat actor were to attempt to tamper with healthcare records, for example, IT admins would be able to see all of their activity and provide a report to the healthcare institution, insurance agencies, and more.

ATEN's Control Center Video Session Recorder (CCVSR) is an innovative software solution that automatically records a video of the operations made on a server or connected medical equipment by administrators when using their KVM over IP switches.

With ATEN KVM over IP switches in place, healthcare IT admins can begin to safeguard their data at the hardware level in a way that a software-only set of solutions simply cannot. In addition, features such as CCVSR, secure off-site access, and PDU association allow for greater monitoring, power management and flexibility so that administrators can protect patient data and give them greater peace of mind.

ATEN Solutions for Healthcare

ATEN specializes in varied, secure solutions to digitize healthcare operations and meet the needs of all healthcare IT department, medical practitioners, and patients. These include:

  • Delivering fast, reliable and continuous video streams with instant real-time source switching and control without delays
  • Interoperating with PACS and ECG equipment, MRI/CT scanners, remote monitoring systems, APS systems, EMR systems, and more
  • Providing the highest resolutions, high-precision quality and accuracy, up to 4K @ 60Hz (4:4:4), HDR, and grayscale imaging support

Want to hear more about hardware solutions for signal distribution in healthcare environments? Get in touch with an ATEN expert.


 About ATEN

ATEN International Co., Ltd. (TWSE: 6277), established in 1979, is the leading provider of AV/IT connectivity and management solutions. Offering integrated KVM, professional AV, SOHO, and intelligent power solutions, ATEN products connect, manage, and optimize AV/IT equipment in corporate, government, education, broadcasting and media, and transportation environments. ATEN has 630+ issued international patents and a global R&D team that produces a constant stream of innovative solutions, resulting in a comprehensive portfolio of products available worldwide.

Headquartered in Taiwan, ATEN International Co., Ltd. has grown to include subsidiaries and regional offices in China, Japan, South Korea, Belgium, Australia, the U.S., the U.K., Russia, Turkey, Poland, India, and Romania – with R&D centers in Taiwan, China, and Canada.