Healthcare data is a goldmine for cybercriminals and attackers. Since patient records contain vital information like social security numbers, names, and payment details, criminals can use the information for identity theft.
The healthcare industry experiences the highest rates of data breach incidents that cost double the average across other industries. The following tips can help healthcare organizations implement data security strategies and prevent breaches.
Maintain Data Protection Compliance
Healthcare and medical facilities maintain compliance with tight regulatory requirements from various bodies like HIPAA, HITECH, GDPR, and CCPA. However, HIPAA compliance is the main focus in the healthcare industry and focuses on four key areas. The regulatory authority sets encryption requirements for protected health information to curb breach incidents. Authentication is also critical to limit, control, and monitor access to vital assets and data.
Digital certificates often complement other data security strategies by helping your organizations confirm user, server, and device identities. In addition, they facilitate a frictionless running of an integrated system in healthcare organizations.
Modernize Obsolete Technology
Some healthcare organizations may still be using legacy systems, putting electronic health records at risk. Most criminals target organizations using outdated systems since they have flimsy protection against advanced attacks. Regardless of whether the manufacturers support outdated systems, they may not keep up with modern threats. New and more intelligent technology is vital to safeguard vulnerable patient data.
Most medical devices are linked to the main network. While some of these devices may not be directly accessible over the internet, criminals can hack a vulnerable device on the network to access the entire IT infrastructure. Once one device is breached, criminals and unauthorized persons can infiltrate your system and jeopardize your operations. Ultimately, adopting and implementing recent technology built to secure your organization is critical.
For instance, RightPatient biometric identification innovation helps healthcare providers handle and protect patient data. It also prevents mix-ups, misidentification, and identity theft. Accurate identification is vital for outpatient surgery patients visiting a liposuction surgeon to ensure flawless service delivery.
Understand potential Risks in Your IT Infrastructure
Before you can implement security strategies, assessing and understanding potential vulnerabilities in your infrastructure is essential. Cyber risk evaluations should be scheduled annually to identify security gaps that can increase the risk factors.
The security audits can be done by internal teams or by third-party partners for a comprehensive assessment of your infrastructure. Potential security risks in healthcare and medical facilities stretch beyond system security and apply to any device with protected health information or access to the main network.
You can start by identifying your valuable assets and data that need strict protection. With the rise of Telehealth, more protected health information flows outside the network perimeter. It’s crucial to identify weak points that can compromise the system.
Data breaches in the healthcare sector have negative financial and reputation impacts. It’s prudent to secure and prevent breach incidents. The process involves controlling access, compliance, and adopting better technology. However, developing a response strategy to mitigate threats is also critical.