Information security of Siemens' remote service platform for medical devices certified

Erlangen 11 May 2007Siemens Medical Solutions is one of the first manufacturers of medical systems worldwide to implement an internationally valid information security management system (ISMS) for the remote service of medical devices. This has been certified by TÜV Süd in Germany according to the international standard ISO 27001.

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When a red light flashes at the Siemens Medical Solutions Service Center in Erlangen, the customer service engineers know that somewhere in the world the X-ray tube in a computed tomography system needs to get replaced. Siemens is able to detect this situation through its Siemens Remote Service (SRS) platform. Worldwide, thousands of medical systems are connected to the Med SRS platform - primarily via Virtual Private Networks (VPN) connections, which are secure virtual data tunnels between two points. The data transmission technology and associated business processes at Siemens have to meet high requirements in accordance with internationally recognized information security management systems.

The task of Siemens Remote Service is to detect warning or problem messages from imaging systems as early as possible. At present, experienced service specialists pro-actively monitor more than 15.000 systems daily and can immediately initiate corresponding measures. As soon as the system is started at the customer site, it can automatically send messages to the service centre via the secure Siemens Med remote platform. As a result, potential deviations or incidents are detected early as "events", enabling malfunctions to be prevented.

Information and data security are crucial decision-making criteria for customers in the medical sector. With this certification, Siemens has shown that information security and data protection have top priority, when operating a highly-complex remote maintenance infrastructure. Siemens demonstrated to the TÜV auditors an effective information security management system (ISMS) that meets all requirements with respect to availability, confidentiality, integrity, and connectivity.

"SRS is the basis and key technology for a pro-active approach to the service business", stated Dr. Wolfgang Heimsch, the head of Customer Services at Siemens Medical Solutions. "And we intend to expand our cutting edge role in this area."

Imaging systems in medical applications are subject to constant use. High patient throughput is critical to ensure system investments over the long term for hospitals and physician's offices. But high utilization also means that wear and tear or deviations can occur. To detect and prevent possible malfunctions as early as possible, Siemens developed its preventive "Remote Service". The advantage is clear: through remote diagnosis, clinical work flow continues uninterrupted and is ensured. Errors are prevented before being noticed by the physicians or responsible personnel.

Siemens Medical Solutions is one of the world's largest suppliers to the health care industry. The company is known for bringing together innovative medical technologies, health care information systems, management consulting, and support services, to help customers achieve tangible, sustainable, clinical and financial outcomes. Recent acquisitions in the area of in-vitro diagnostics, such as Diagnostic Products Corporation and Bayer Diagnostics, mark a significant milestone for Siemens as it becomes the first full service diagnostics company. Employing more than 41.000 people worldwide and operating in over 130 countries, Siemens Medical Solutions reported sales of 8,23 billion euro, orders of 9,33 billion euro and group profit of 1,06 billion euro for fiscal year 2006 which ended on September 30.


Leslie Versweyveld

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