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NHS Digital protects patient data with Cisco and Computacenter

NHS Digital protects patient data with Cisco and Computacenter

From patient data to time-critical communications, lives depend on reliable information sharing in the NHS. With global cyberthreats evolving daily, NHS Digital has selected Cisco and Computacenter to help secure the network that provides connectivity for health and social care services across the UK.

In collaboration with NHS Digital, Cisco and Computacenter have introduced technology, processes and training to identify, provide insight into and stop security threats on the network before they impact crucial services.

Based on Cisco Stealthwatch, the holistic network analytics solution uses Machine Learning to identify malicious activity. It is then stopped or flagged to the NHS Digital Security Operations Centre (SOC) for further action. The SOC was established in partnership with Cisco services and is supported by defined incident response guidelines.

“In an age of digitisation, trust in IT is absolutely crucial. When this is applied to healthcare, the underlying importance of trust between patient and the healthcare professional, combined with trust in the ability to access, protect and recover patient information, is paramount. Not only is it paramount for the effectiveness of the healthcare professional, but also as peace of mind for the patient,” said Chris Price, Director of Public Sector and SI, Computacenter. “Reliable IT security is no longer an option, it’s a necessity. Through this partnership, NHS Digital can rest assured that they are applying best practice in data security.”

The provision of the Health and Social Care Network (HSCN) is key in securely connecting healthcare organisations. HSCN is a hybrid wide area network providing both private and Internet connectivity, which succeeds the legacy NHS N3 network, enabling NHS organisations across the UK, including regional hospitals, clinics and GP surgeries, to communicate and securely share digital patient records via a reliable and feature-rich platform.

“Cyberthreats are constantly evolving. This necessary step will help ensure that digital health and care organisations are protected, prepared and ready to respond,” said Scot Gardner, Chief Executive, Cisco UK and Ireland. “The security solution delivered by Cisco and Computacenter provides NHS Digital’s security analysts with visibility of traffic patterns and potential threats across the network, enabling this critical public service to better protect themselves and continue to focus on the important work of providing world-class care for everyone in the UK.”

Computacenter designed and led the project, providing a single source of information and technical oversight, integrating with Cisco to deliver a comprehensive solution for NHS Digital. As a Cisco Gold Partner, Computacenter engaged with Cisco to design and build the analytics solution and the underlying hardware platform. Cisco and Computacenter have created bespoke security playbooks to aid incident remediation and help safeguard business continuity.

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