"In the busy environment of our ITU ward we have nurses working in shifts and visitors walking in and out. Consequently, the policy of the NHS trust is that we need to securely store our drugs. Before, we used key based cupboards to do so. Each of our 65 nurses owned a key to operate them, sometimes up to 100 times a day. As a result of the intensive use, the locks wore out regularly. Sometimes the nurses couldn’t lock the cupboards properly anymore and bent or broke their keys as a result. Patient safety always comes first, and we had to be confident that the cupboards were secure at all times. We also had to comply with the national NHS policy to securely store the drugs. That’s where Nedap came in."

Recommendation for Nedap

"When we asked our partner Carillion, facilitator of the NHS trust fund buildings, about a solution to comply with the NHS security policy, they recommended Nedap. They worked with Nedap before in other NHS site projects, for example NHS Crawley & Horsham hospital. Carillion had heard about the locker management functionality of Nedap’s security management platform AEOS. They told us that this solution could help us solve our key management problem in a cost effective way. Not only for us, but also for Carillion themselves," says Tara Laybourne, Manager of the ITU ward, Darent Valley Hospital.

No more key management

"Because the mechanical keys and locks wore out all the time, Carillion had to come over very often to replace them. Also, every time you copy a key, the key gets worse. Eventually it didn’t fit the lock anymore. It was an ongoing problem. That’s why we chose AEOS Locker Management,’ says Tara. ‘The main reason is that the locks can be operated with badges instead of keys. All of our nurses now have one single badge which operates every drug cupboard on the ITU ward.’ Also from a maintenance point of view the electronic locker management solution is very cost effective; locks and keys don’t have to be replaced anymore and as the locks are wired, there’s no need to replace batteries. Tara says: ‘Generally, the solution serves a good purpose and is worth the money."

Track and trace access

"Apart from the fact that we can now secure the access to the cupboards, we can also track and trace who’s accessed the cupboards at what time. That’s also one of the reasons why we’ve chosen for AEOS Locker Management. According to NHS policy, we have to keep our drugs securely stored. They regularly perform audit trails to check if we comply to the policy. In case of an audit trail, we can easily prove that only authorised persons had access to the cupboards," says Tara.

AEOS Locker Management provides access control on micro level. Via an easy to use web application, accessible via every web browser, users can easily define who should have access to which lockable compartment at what time. When asked about the user friendliness of the system, Tara says: "We’re happy about the system, but still finding our way around it though. Sometimes, when we issue a new badge to a new colleague, we accidentally issue a visitor badge instead of an employee badge. Consequently, the new colleague can’t open the cupboards. Then we know that we did something wrong. With a few mouse clicks we can fix our mistake; the system is easy to manage. To keep the process of managing the cupboards secure and clear, only myself and someone else are authorised to manage the system and assign badges. In case both of us are out, the others have an algorithm to check user history if necessary."

"In the past keys were sometimes lost or misplaced. Since the installation of AEOS Locker Management, they never lost a badge, so that’s a great benefit too"

User experiences

When asked about the cooperation with Nedap and its certified Business Partner, Tara says: "The cooperation was good. Nedap was available to come over in the case of an event. For example, one time, the cupboard wouldn’t close. It turned out that the hinges where dislocated. Because the nurses lean on it all the time, we had to renew them. So, it wasn’t really due to the system. In the past keys were sometimes lost or misplaced. Since the installation of AEOS Locker Management, they never lost a badge, so that’s a great benefit too."

Future proof

Darent Valley hospital is now ready for the future. In case more drug cupboards should be equipped with Nedap’s electronic locks, they can be integrated into the existing AEOS Locker Management system with a few mouse clicks. Because the hospital opted for the solid AEOS security management platform, they can also choose to add on functionalities like access control, intrusion or video management later on. For now, they only use the locker management functionality of the platform and they only pay for the locker management feature they use.

Darent Valley hospital

Darent Valley is a modern hospital in Kent offering professional care, exceptional quality and providing patients with the latest technology for their treatment in safe, comfortable and clean surroundings. The hospital’s team of around 2000 professional and friendly staff provides care for patients across a full range of day-patient, inpatient and out-patient care. It works closely with the local community to improve the standards of its services and welcome all patients both locally or further afield. As Darent Valley benefits from the solid AEOS platform, they can choose to add on functionalities like access control, intrusion or CCTV later on. For now, they only pay for the feature they use.

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Adapting servers for IP video surveillance systems: Why manufacturers struggle
Adapting servers for IP video surveillance systems: Why manufacturers struggle

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New Year’s Resolutions to counter web and mobile application security breaches in 2019
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Data exfiltration detection During a Magecart attack, the transaction processes are otherwise undisturbed. The target companies receive payment, and customers receive the services or goods they purchased. As a result, no one is wise to a breach — until some 380,000 customers are impacted, as in the case of the attack against British Airways. The target companies’ web application firewalls and data loss prevention systems didn’t detect the data exfiltration because those controls don’t monitor or protect front-end code. Instead, they watch traffic going to and from servers. In the case of the Magecart attacks, the organisation was compromised and data was stolen before it even got to the network or servers. 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Throughout the app’s lifecycle, you can respond to malicious behavior early, quarantine suspicious accounts, and make continuous code modifications to stay a step ahead of new attacks. Protect Next, informed by threat analytics, adapt your application source code protection. Deter attackers from analysing or reverse engineering application code through obfuscation. Today’s proven obfuscation techniques can help prevent application reverse engineering, deter tampering, and protect personal identifiable information and API communications. 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However, the single point of failure remains the instance at which the decryption key is used. Effective encryption requires a sophisticated implementation of White-Box Cryptography This point is easily identifiable through signature patterns and cryptographic routines. Once found, an attacker can easily navigate to where the keys are constructed in memory and exploit them. Effective encryption requires a sophisticated implementation of White-Box Cryptography. One that combines a mathematical algorithm with data and code obfuscation techniques transforming cryptographic keys and related operations into indecipherable text strings. Protecting encryption keys is often overlooked but should be considered a best practice as you forge into the new year with a renewed commitment to app security to ensure your organisation’s health and well-being in 2019. 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How organisations can secure user credentials from data breaches and password hacks
How organisations can secure user credentials from data breaches and password hacks

In the age of massive data breaches, phishing attacks and password hacks, user credentials are increasingly unsafe. So how can organisations secure accounts without making life more difficult for users? Marc Vanmaele, CEO of TrustBuilder, explains. User credentials give us a sense of security. Users select their password, it's personal and memorable to them, and it's likely that it includes special characters and numbers for added security. Sadly, this sense is most likely false. If it's anything like the 5.4 billion user IDs on haveibeenpwned.com, their login has already been compromised. If it's not listed, it could be soon. Recent estimates state that 8 million more credentials are compromised every day. Ensuring safe access Data breaches, ransomware and phishing campaigns are increasingly easy to pull off. Cyber criminals can easily find the tools they need on Google with little to no technical knowledge. Breached passwords are readily available to cyber criminals on the internet. Those that haven’t been breached can also be guessed, phished or cracked using one of the many “brute-force” tools available on the internet. It's becoming clear that login credentials are no longer enough to secure your users' accounts. Meanwhile, organisations have a responsibility and an ever-stricter legal obligation to protect their users’ sensitive data. This makes ensuring safe access to the services they need challenging, particularly when trying to provide a user experience that won’t cause frustration – or worse, lose your customers’ interest. After GDPR was implemented across the European Union, organisations could face a fine of up to €20 million, or 4% annual global turnover Importance of data protection So how can businesses ensure their users can safely and simply access the services they need while keeping intruders out, and why is it so important to strike that balance? After GDPR was implemented across the European Union, organisations could face a fine of up to €20 million, or 4% annual global turnover – whichever is higher, should they seriously fail to comply with their data protection obligations. This alone was enough to prompt many organisations to get serious about their user’s security. Still, not every business followed suit. Cloud security risks Breaches were most commonly identified in organisations using cloud computing or where staff use personal devices According to a recent survey conducted at Infosecurity Europe, more than a quarter of organisations did not feel ready to comply with GDPR in August 2018 – three months after the compliance deadline. Meanwhile, according to the UK Government’s 2018 Cyber Security Breaches survey, 45% of businesses reported breaches or attacks in the last 12 months. According to the report, logins are less secure when accessing services in the cloud where they aren't protected by enterprise firewalls and security systems. Moreover, breaches were most commonly identified in organisations using cloud computing or where staff use personal devices (known as BYOD). According to the survey, 61% of UK organisations use cloud-based services. The figure is higher in banking and finance (74%), IT and communications (81%) and education (75%). Additionally, 45% of businesses have BYOD. This indicates a precarious situation. The majority of businesses hold personal data on users electronically and may be placing users at risk if their IT environments are not adequately protected. Hackers have developed a wide range of tools to crack passwords, and these are readily available within a couple of clicks on a search engine Hacking methodology In a recent exposé on LifeHacker, Internet standards expert John Pozadzides revealed multiple methods hackers use to bypass even the most secure passwords. According to John’s revelations, 20% of passwords are simple enough to guess using easily accessible information. But that doesn’t leave the remaining 80% safe. Hackers have developed a wide range of tools to crack passwords, and these are readily available within a couple of clicks on a search engine. Brute force attacks are one of the easiest methods, but criminals also use increasingly sophisticated phishing campaigns to fool users into handing over their passwords. Users expect organisations to protect their passwords and keep intruders out of their accounts Once a threat actor has access to one password, they can easily gain access to multiple accounts. This is because, according to Mashable, 87% of users aged 18-30 and 81% of users aged 31+ reuse the same passwords across multiple accounts. It’s becoming clear that passwords are no longer enough to keep online accounts secure. Securing data with simplicity Users expect organisations to protect their passwords and keep intruders out of their accounts. As a result of a data breach, companies will of course suffer financial losses through fines and remediation costs. Beyond the immediate financial repercussions, however, the reputational damage can be seriously costly. A recent Gemalto study showed that 44% of consumers would leave their bank in the event of a security breach, and 38% would switch to a competitor offering a better service. Simplicity is equally important, however. For example, if it’s not delivered in ecommerce, one in three customers will abandon their purchase – as a recent report by Magnetic North revealed. If a login process is confusing, staff may be tempted to help themselves access the information they need by slipping out of secure habits. They may write their passwords down, share them with other members of staff, and may be more susceptible to social engineering attacks. So how do organisations strike the right balance? For many, Identity and Access Management solutions help to deliver secure access across the entire estate. It’s important though that these enable simplicity for the organisation, as well as users. Organisations need an IAM solution that will adapt to both of these factors, providing them with the ability to apply tough access policies when and where they are needed and prioritising swift access where it’s safe to do so Flexible IAM While IAM is highly recommended, organisations should seek solutions that offer the flexibility to define their own balance between a seamless end-user journey and the need for a high level of identity assurance. Organisations’ identity management requirements will change over time. So too will their IT environments. Organisations need an IAM solution that will adapt to both of these factors, providing them with the ability to apply tough access policies when and where they are needed and prioritising swift access where it’s safe to do so. Importantly, the best solutions will be those that enable this flexibility without spending significant time and resource each time adaptations need to be made. Those that do will provide the best return on investment for organisations looking to keep intruders at bay, while enabling users to log in safely and simply.