As technology advances, so do hackers. With technological advances and new hospital equipment comes the potential for cyber security issues. This can result in many problems, such as compromised patient information, unavailability of data, and even territorial loss.
In one of the worst data breaches announced this year, a ransomware attack on printing and mailing vendor OneTouchPoint was discovered on April 28 and affected more than 30 health plans and 4.11 million users.
More than just security network systems is needed. There are also increasing threats facing internal networks and proprietary data. In addition to traditional IT security, a new layer of cybersecurity architecture has emerged in which IT teams must protect the integrity of patient data.
Why Does the Healthcare Industry Get Hit With More Breaches?
The healthcare industry has a long history of being vulnerable to cyberattacks. The attacks are not just limited to hospitals and medical clinics but also reach areas like insurance and pharmaceuticals.
The reason why the healthcare industry gets hit with more breaches can be attributed to multiple reasons:
The Value of Healthcare Data
Healthcare data is worth more than other types of information because hackers can use it to commit fraud or identity theft. In addition, health insurance companies, pharmaceuticals, and medical device manufacturers have all seen their stocks fall following a breach. This means that cybercriminals are targeting healthcare organizations because they know that this information is valuable.
High Demand for Healthcare Services
With an aging population and a growing number of people with chronic diseases, there will be more demand for healthcare services in the future. This means there will be more opportunities for hackers to target vulnerable systems to steal sensitive data and compromise patient records.
Complex and Outdated Systems
Healthcare organizations operate on complex systems that often need to be designed with security in mind. In addition to outdated technology that may not be able to support new cyber defenses or patch existing vulnerabilities, many hospitals use paper-based processes that are vulnerable to fraud and abuse due to human error. This makes it difficult for them to track down any potential issues before they become problems — namely data breaches.
Lack of Cybersecurity Measures
Most organizations in this field need proper cybersecurity systems and protocols. This makes them an easy target for hackers who can easily breach their systems and access sensitive information. Complex and outdated systems: Healthcare facilities use a wide range of technology products from different vendors, which makes it difficult for them to keep track of all their devices, software updates, etc.
Cybersecurity Challenges in HealthCare
Cybersecurity is one of the most pressing issues for the healthcare industry. The healthcare industry faces a range of cybersecurity challenges, including:
Scam websites often use an official-looking URL to trick people into giving up personal information. These sites may also claim that they are affiliated with a legitimate organization and ask for payment or other personal information.
Ransomware, Malware & Phishing Threats
Ransomware is malicious software that blocks access to your computer or files until you pay a ransom. Malware is any unwanted software that can infect your device without your knowledge. Phishing is when someone pretends to be someone else to get sensitive information such as passwords or credit card numbers from you.
Cloud computing has become an incredibly popular way for companies to manage their data storage needs. However, since cloud servers store data from multiple clients in one place, they're also easier targets for hackers looking to steal valuable information or disrupt services. Healthcare providers who use cloud services should ensure that those companies have strong security protocols to protect their customers' data from breaches and malware attacks.
Physical Security Threats
Healthcare organizations typically have large amounts of valuable property on-site that could attract thieves looking for easy pickings. They also contain sensitive information that thieves might try to steal for profit or use as leverage against the organization's leadership or other staff members for personal gain. A single theft or break-in could expose thousands of patients' confidential information — including Social Security numbers, medical records, and financial information — putting them at risk for identity theft and fraud.
Complex And Outdated Systems:
The healthcare industry relies on a complex network of systems, including electronic health records (EHRs), medical devices, and other technologies. These systems can be difficult to secure, and many are running on outdated software that may have vulnerabilities.
Building A Resilient Cybersecurity Architecture In Healthcare
Some key considerations for building a resilient cybersecurity architecture in healthcare include:
Prioritizing your efforts based on your organization's specific risks is crucial. In order to identify vulnerabilities and potential threats, a risk assessment may be necessary.
Firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and encryption can all help protect patient data. Making sure that your controls are configured correctly and regularly updated is necessary to the success of your organization.
Access controls can help to prevent unauthorized access to patient data. This may involve implementing authentication and authorization measures, such as multifactor authentication and role-based access controls.
Training and awareness
Ensuring that employees are aware of cybersecurity best practices and are trained in how to recognize and prevent threats is crucial for protecting patient data. This may involve providing regular cybersecurity training and promoting a culture of security within the organization.
Incident response plan
Having a well-defined incident response plan in place can help to minimize the impact of a security breach and ensure that the organization is prepared to respond effectively. This may include procedures for detecting, responding to, and recovering from a security incident.
Protecting patient data is crucial for healthcare organizations, as a breach of this data could have serious consequences for both the organization and the individuals affected. A resilient cybersecurity architecture is essential for ensuring the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of patient data. However, it is important to get the necessary assistance possible and MAC Group advisors can provide the security planning, reviews, and designs to optimize your security infrastructure, architecture, on-prem and cloud networks to restrict your attack surface.