When the acclaimed television drama series “Homeland” climaxed with a devious plot by terrorists to kill America’s vice president by hacking into his electronic pacemaker, critics mocked the ludicrousness of the idea, deeming it as simply far-fetched fiction. However, the storyline was thought of as credible by those in the know within the world of computer security.
Executive SummaryTechnology has become an intrinsic part of modern medical devices, and the idea of causing bodily harm by hacking an implanted device is no longer just science fiction. The insurance industry needs the combined skills of technology, cyber and health care underwriters to address the growing needs of this new generation of risks.
Among those was New Zealand-born computer ethical hacker Barnaby Jack.
Jack, who was famed for demonstrating cash machine hacks live on stage in Las Vegas and later highlighted the insecurity of smart medical devices, was found dead at home in San Francisco last July, days before he was due to give a talk on hacking electronic medical implants at the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas. The presentation he was due to give was named “Hacking Humans.” (It was recently concluded that an accidental drug overdose caused Jack’s untimely death.)