Medigate raises $5.35 million in seed funding to continue development of medical device security platform

By Laura Lovett
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Tel Aviv, Israel-based medical device security platform, Medigate, announced today that it has raised $5.35 million in seed funding. The funding is provided by YL Ventures with additional funding from Blumberg Capital. 

Medigate plans to use the funding to further its work of securing connected medical devices on healthcare provider networks. The company said the funding will develop the product to allow chief information security officers and security teams to defend networked medical devices from cyberattacks. 

In its funding announcement, the company discussed the growing number of connected medical devices in hospitals and clinics and also the increasing trend of cyberattacks targeting these devices, such as MEDJACK, a cyber attack which started in 2015. 

“It's an imperative to connect devices to the network, both to manage and monitor devices in real time and to understand and analyze the large amounts of data generated from these devices,” Jonathan Langer, Medigate CEO and cofounder, said in a statement. “At the same time, we see backdoor attacks like MEDJACK and ransomware attacks like WannaCry and NotPetya successfully targeting healthcare providers. Connected devices are a ripe target for cybercriminals. The Medigate solution is designed to effectively protect medical devices from these attacks and eliminate this pandemic risk. We are truly ecstatic to have two leading global funds like YL Ventures and Blumberg Capital investing in Medigate.”

Medigate is a platform dedicated to securing networked medical devices that are connected to electronic medical records, device servers and other enterprise systems and the internet. The company works to identify those devices by type and personality and then analyzes their specialized protocols, communications and behaviors.
 
The system first discovers all of the medical devices that are connected to a specific network. It then identifies and classifies the devices and its normal communication. It also inspects traffic between the identified medical devices and the network and picks up on any suspicious behavior. If the system detects the network is under attack it enables micro-segmentation and realtime blocking of malicious communications, without impacting the operation of device under attack. 

The company said makers of existing firewalls don’t always understand how the medical devices in particular work and communicate, which could leave them open to attacks on network protocols and unique medical device protocols.

Cofounders Langer, Itay Kirshenbaum, Pini Pinhasov have all served in Intelligence units of the Israeli Defense Forces, though in different focuses. 

Medical device security has been a topic of interest in the industry. At HIMSS Healthcare Security Forum in September, experts discussed the inherent problems in defending older legacy medical devices against new security threats. 

“Connected medical devices – from patient monitors, MRIs and CAT scanners to infusion pumps and yet-to-be invented devices — are critical to the delivery of healthcare today and are revolutionizing the care of tomorrow,” said Yoav Leitersdorf, managing partner at YL Ventures, which led the Medigate funding round, in a statement. “These devices are inherently different from traditional IT endpoints and can’t be protected by currently available products and practices. With the pandemic of cyberattacks targeting healthcare providers, far too many connected devices are left vulnerable and exposed, putting patient health and privacy at risk. Medigate’s solution directly addresses this crucial problem by mitigating targeted attacks on medical devices.”