Thursday, December 09, 2010
"Distributed Denial of Service" Attacks: Is Pharma Ready for Cyber Warfare?
This concerns me. But of even greater concern to me is the spate of hacker attacks against Wikileaks and counter-attacks against Amazon and other web sites like Mastercard and Paypal that have also ceased doing business with WikiLeaks (see, for example, "Hackers Give Web Companies a Test of Free Speech").
Perhaps pharmaceutical companies are next. What's to prevent some hacker from deciding that the Lyrica.com web site should be shut down because he/she took issue with print ads that may be in violation of FDA regulations (eg, see "Pfizer's Latest Lyrica DTC Ad Should Be Cited By FDA as Misleading")?
I am not technically savvy enough to know how these attacks are done, but I understand it's a fairly simple thing to do. And I don't know how Web sites can protect themselves from hacker attacks in general.
But one thing I suspect: many pharmaceutical may not have a plan in place to protect their web sites. I know form experience that even the largest pharmaceutical company in the world was not too technically savvy about how to start up a twitter account and keep abreast of what was being said about it on Twitter (see "Follow Who's Following Me on Twitter. But NOT Phishy 'pfizer' Please!").
What do you think?