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Saturday, May 21, 2022
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Protecting pharmaceutical data with Azure


At a Glance

  • $ 985 million: The median cost of getting a new drug into the market
  • $ 1.3 billion: The newer, lower average cost of getting a new drug to market
  • $ 2.8 billion: The previous average cost of getting a new drug to market
  • $ 200 billion: The estimated size of the counterfeit drug market
  • 13: the number of new drugs not brought to market each year because of revenue losses from counterfeit drugs

Sources: Wikipedia and Statista.com

Introduction

On average, the cost of bringing a new medicine from idea to market – aka the drug development process – has dropped significantly, from $ 2.8 billion per drug to $ 1.3 billion each, according to an online encyclopedia. Counterfeits though, still have a measurable effect on the number of drugs being brought to market. According to recent studies published on Wikipedia and Statista.com, prescription drug makers continue to get hammered by counterfeit competition.

Statista’s 2022 study provided interesting data on different scenarios showing changes based on market size. The number of new medicines not brought to market ranged from six at $ 100 billion to 28 at $ 431 billion

So what does all this mean? The short version is big pharma, and even smaller companies, have a huge investment in intellectual property (IP) they need to protect.

IP and Drug Manufacturers

“IP rights, if sufficiently limited, are typically justified as necessary to allow pharmaceutical manufacturers the ability to recoup substantial costs in research and development, including clinical trials and other tests necessary to obtain regulatory approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA),” the Congressional Research Service states (CRS).

Pharmaceutical companies are protected by two types of intellectual property (IP): patents, which give exclusive rights to the holder for 20 years, and regulatory exclusivities. According to CRS these exclusivities range from six months to 12 years depending on the specific type of drug or biologic.

These companies have a huge financial investment tied up in their research, development, and testing data. The only way to recover their huge investments is by making and selling products.

It can cost millions of dollars and over 10 years of dedication or more developing a single drug. With the levels of money involved, though, thieves have a strong incentive to capture this research for themselves.

Protecting Your IP Investment

Take a look at another statistic: $ 590 million. That’s the amount the US Treasury Department estimates was paid by victims of 450 ransomware attacks in the first half of 2021 alone.

Using that short time frame alone, the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) stated that, “ransomware is an increasing threat to the US financial sector, businesses, and the public.”

Ransomware is one of many types of cyber attacks that share a common goal: stealing money. This type of attacks works by infiltrating a company’s computer network, taking control of it. Companies are faced with a difficult decision: pay the ransom, have their data destroyed, or worse: shared around the world.

Distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks are another common weapon seen in a hackers arsenal. “In computing, a denial-of-service attack is a cyber-attack in which the perpetrator seeks to make a machine or network resource unavailable to its intended users by temporarily or indefinitely disrupting services of a host connected to a network,” a Wikipedia article states.

Many of these attacks start with simple phishing schemes. If they get one employee out of thousands to open an infected email, they have a doorway into your data. Microsoft does everything it can to block these attacks and protect not only its investment but yours.

Just as with ransomware and other attacks through stealth or brute force, the goal of DDoS attacks is money. The thinking is along the lines of, “Hit a company bad enough often enough and it will pay you to leave them alone.”

Figure 1:Key Strategies to Avoid Cyber ​​Security Attacks

Book a free consultation to discover more about Azure protection in the pharma industry.

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Protection in the Cloud

Every company has another option, though: investing in its own security.

One method of stealing data involves capturing it as it moves from place to place. Microsoft has invested millions of dollars over many years to continuously protect its customers’ data through its Azure cloud computing platform. They detect 1.5 million attempts per day to compromise its systems, spending about $ 1 billion a year on computer infrastructure security, the company stated in a recent blog post.

With the ongoing need to invest in protecting their on-premise equipment from attacks, more firms are migrating to the cloud, with platforms like Azure gaining importance with each thwarted attack. Moving data from on-premise network servers to widely spread cloud data centers means attackers have to hit moving targets if they want to control a company’s data.

“The cloud has some built-in advantages. Unlike the internet in general, it was built from the ground up with modern security and privacy in mind. It’s also a controlled ecosystem protected by people who spend all day thinking about data security and privacy, ”according to a recent Microsoft online story.

Traditionally, internet and computer security safeguards were bolted onto a tool rather than built into it. “With cloud infrastructure, security considerations are part of the development process,” Microsoft states. “The cloud is an opportunity to make security better,” security analyst Doug Cahill added.

Azure’s status as a cloud platform means that all of the money, and the 3,500 security engineers Microsoft devotes into making it secure, also benefits the software running on top of it. For example, Microsoft Dynamics 365’s Supply Chain Managementwhich helps companies track raw materials and finished products from the warehouse to the customer, runs on top of Azure.

Companies using this software get the bonus of automatic protection for their cloud data. While these updates can not directly help prevent thieves from making a physical attack on their buildings, it can make it harder for them to steal data on the move.

“If we detect a set of attacks on one tenant, or a handful of tenants, we can synthesize that start using the things we learn from that to protect all the other tenants out there,” Bharat Shah, Microsoft’s vice president of Security for the Azure platform said. “That’s the cloud effect. We learn. We react. We turn something on and we protect everybody else. ”

Azure benefits from Microsoft’s investment in machine learning – a branch of artificial intelligence – to track attempted attacks. Microsoft takes what it learns and uses it to benefit not just Azure, but all the companies whose multi-million dollar intellectual property investment rides on top of it.

The Bottom Line

Citing the NETSCOUT Threat Intelligence report, Forbes.com estimated there were 26,000 cyber attacks per day, or 18 per minute, in 2020 alone. The report indicated security threats against industrial control systems and operational technology more than tripled in 2020 while DDoS attacks will grow to 15.4 million by 2023.

These numbers should make any executive who does not have a large cyber security team on their staff, nervous. Thankfully, companies who use Microsoft Azure’s cloud computing platform have the security of more than 3,500 security engineers devoted to protecting it and the data running through it.

With the livelihood of pharmaceutical companies depending on keeping their data safe, secure and private you do not risk your company’s data with poor security. Investing in Azure services today can make a huge difference in your bottom line.

About XcelPros

XcelPros is a Chicago-based company and delivers transformation through technology. We offer business and technology solutions with deep industry experience in Chemical, Pharma, Life Sciences (including Medical Devices, Bio-Medical & Biotech), Insurance, Discrete Manufacturing, Process Manufacturing, Distribution and Food & Beverage.

XcelPros is a Microsoft Gold Partner, Direct Cloud Solutions Provider (CSP) and a Systems Integrator (SI) offering software licensing, implementation and consulting services for Microsoft Dynamics 365, CRM, Microsoft Dynamics AX, Business Intelligence & Analytics (Power BI), SharePoint , Office 365 and Azure (Cloud, IoT, Microsoft Flow amongst many others).

Our mission is to provide integrated technology solutions that amplify impact and empower our customer’s businesses. We believe technology is the key enabler of exponential growth for us and our customers.

Contact XcelPros today to transform your business.

Call us toll-free – 1,855,411,0585 (or) visit www.xcelpros.com



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