Yesterday, Hixny received an unclassified memorandum from the New York State Intelligence Center (NYSIC) regarding cyber activity targeting multiple sectors in New York. This notice reported that several trusted third parties have identified various malicious Internet Protocol (IP) addresses originating from overseas which are targeting multiple state government, financial services, healthcare and transportation services sectors.
Unfortunately, cyber-attacks have become all too common, which is why Hixny has established many layers of cyber-security to protect the privacy and security of the patients in our region.
I would like to take a minute and talk about one of our most basic layers of defense in our security infrastructure called geo-fencing. Geo-Fencing is implemented in our firewalls and enables us to allow or deny access based on an end-user’s geographic location. This prevents users outside of the geo-fence from getting through our firewall and attempting to authenticate to our systems’ services. In the case of this specific security notice, the recommendation from NYSIC is to block access to systems from the listed IP addresses.
In Hixny’s case all of the identified IP addresses reside outside of our geo-fence and are therefore already blocked. Geo-fencing is only the first of many lines of cyber-security defense Hixny has established. This level of protection is often not a standard “out of the box” firewall system configuration, but is considered best practice for networks like ours which can establish geographic boundaries of users. It is important to reiterate that we take many other additional precautions above and beyond this layer of protection including performing regular independent third party tests of our system to ensure that we are not vulnerable to external attacks. You can be sure that while these notices and attacks are likely to continue, Hixny will remain vigilant and proactive in maintaining its cyber-security defenses to keep data and patients secure.