A case study from the VDE: In a large hospital, a ventilator is connected to an intensive care information management system (IMS) so that data can be easily transmitted. After an unspecified period of time, the ventilator suddenly switched off – without any prior error message or alarm signal. What happened?
The device driver of the PDMS regularly repeated a data request. Each time, a new process was generated in the ventilator without releasing the memory area. In the course of time, a memory overflow occurred. The memory area essential for the operation of the ventilator was overwritten and the operating software crashed completely.
An error that can have fatal consequences. In order to avoid such cases, IEC 80001-1 describes objectives to protect patients, users and third parties.