Security hardening of implantable cardioverter defibrillators

Iram Jaffar*, Muhammad Usman, Alireza Jolfaei

*Corresponding author for this work

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Contemporary healthcare has witnessed a wide deployment of Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators (ICDs), which have the capability to be controlled remotely, making them equally accessible from both home and hospitals. The therapeutic benefits of ICDs seem to outweigh potential security concerns, yet overlooking the presence of malicious attacks cannot be justified. This study investigates the scenario where an adversary falsifies a controller command and sends instructions to issue high electric shocks in succession. We propose a novel security hardening mechanism to protect data communications between ICD and controller from malicious data manipulations. Our proposed method verifies the correctness of an external command with respect to the history of heart rhythms. The proposed method is evaluated using real data. Multi-aspect analyses show the effectiveness of the proposed scheme.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings 2019 IEEE International Conference on Industrial Technology (ICIT)
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781538663769
ISBN (Print)9781538663776
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes
Event20th IEEE International Conference on Industrial Technology, ICIT 2019 - Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 13 Feb 201915 Feb 2019

Publication series

NameIEEE International Conference on Industrial Technology
ISSN (Print)2643-2978


Conference20th IEEE International Conference on Industrial Technology, ICIT 2019


  • heart defibrillator
  • implant
  • security
  • wireless sensor networks

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