7 Steps Every Health Care Organization Should Take to Keep Their Data Safe

7 Steps Every Health Care Organization Should Take to Keep Their Data Safe

According to the cost of data breach report 2020, the average cost of a data breach is $3.86 million. Sadly, the cost of a data breach for healthcare organizations is almost twice as much. Yes, you read that right. The average cost of a data breach for a healthcare organization is $7.13 million. Read about Health Care Organizations Should Keep Data Safe  below.

Health care organizations store a ton of sensitive data, but they rarely invest in technology such as Cheap dedicated server. According to Piyush Pandey, Appian CEO, “Today large investment banks such as Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley think of themselves as technology companies first. That’s what has to happen in the medical field as they adopt new technologies, such as telehealth. Medical people should invest in technology the same way.”

This makes them more vulnerable to data breaches and cybersecurity attacks. How can healthcare organizations keep their sensitive data secure? In this article, you will learn about seven steps every healthcare organization should take to keep their data safe.

  1. Develop a Cybersecurity Awareness Program

Just because cybersecurity awareness is a point on your agenda does not mean that it is enough to keep your healthcare organization safe. Health care organizations will have to go above and beyond that and cover every aspect of cybersecurity. From forcing their employees to set strong passwords to take regular backups of their critical data and everything in between.

Launch mock attacks to test the effectiveness of cybersecurity awareness of your employees. It will tell you which employee learned how to identify phishing attacks, and which fall into the trap. You need to do follow-ups and retrain employees who clicked on a malicious link sent to them in a mock phishing email.

  1. Create an Awareness and Training Program for Patients

Most health care organizations think that they have much better control over their employees than they do on their patients. Despite this, cybersecurity experts suggest that you should also create a cybersecurity program for the patients. Kelvin Coleman, executive director of National Cybersecurity Alliance suggests that “Hospitals should ask patients to update their connected devices as soon as the update is available. Set long passwords which use a combination of alphanumeric characters across different accounts. Use different passwords for every account. Implement multi-factor authentication and switch to more secure authentication methods such as biometric user verification, one-time passwords, security keys on patient portals and financial accounts.”

  1. Do Risk-Based Patching

Health care organizations need to focus more on risk and less on security because it will help them with vulnerability and patching. Not only can it prevent your resources from going down the drain, but it can also help you focus on the right risks. With hundreds or even thousands of security vulnerabilities to patch, it is important to prioritize the mitigation efforts.

Another benefit of adopting a risk-based patching approach is that it takes threats, security loopholes and the business impact they will have on your healthcare organization. This means that your health care organization must patch critical vulnerabilities affecting ventilators, CT scan machines and X-ray machines as well as health data covered by HIPAA. Some of the common security vulnerabilities that impacts health care organizations are:

  • Insider Threat
  • Mobile Health devices
  • Ransomware
  • IoT exploits
  • Supply chain issues
  1. Keep an Eye on Ransomware Attacks

According to a report, there has been a whopping 350% increase in the number of ransomware attacks targeting health care businesses in the last quarter of 2019. Despite this, 86% of health care organizations do not use scanning and filtering tools. Since, 91% of ransomware attacks succeed due to phishing exploits, using scanning and email filtering tool can reduce the risk by 33%.

What’s even worse is that healthcare organizations, whether small or big, can become a target for a ransomware attack. So, how can they keep themselves safe from a ransomware attack? Here is an infographic that shows you how. Small health care facilities should focus on data backups, increasing security awareness, and patching while large hospitals should focus on conducting large-scale exercises once or twice a year along with small drills every month or quarter to keep their data safe.

  1. Have a Backup and Restore Mechanism

One of the best lines of defense against ransomware is to keep a backup of your sensitive data. Even if the hacker makes your data inaccessible, you can easily fall back on your data backups and restore your data from there. Having a backup is not enough, you should also test whether you’re backup and restore system works as planned.

Ransomware attackers usually threaten health care organizations that they would dump their sensitive data online if they do not pay the ransom before the deadline but very few attackers go that far, according to security experts. This means that health care organizations do not need to worry much about their data getting leaked online. They should focus on improving their backup and restore mechanism so they can get back to normal quickly even after getting targeted by ransomware attacks.

  1. Shift to Privileged Access Management Approach

Health care organizations should ditch the old-fashioned access management and password policy and adopt a new more threat-centric approach. You should create access zones to limit access for privileged users. Enforce multi-factor authentication to authenticate privilege access to users who are trying to access key systems.

Even if the ransomware targets other systems, it cannot affect your key systems as they require an extra verification step. Always give users data access only to resources that are necessary for them to complete their job. Moreover, fat loss extreme health care facilities should also think about implementing access requests and create a secure approval workflow. Govern privilege upgrade with the multi-level approval process. This allows you to access the context linked to the request.

  1. Buy Secure IoT Devices

With wearable and IoT devices tracking every minor detail of our body, it is even more important for health care businesses to ensure the safety of these devices and the data they collect and save. Since most IoT devices have a default password, lack encryption, and don’t get regular software updates, they can easily become a soft target for attackers. That is why it is important for health care organizations to buy IoT devices from manufactures that prioritize security over everything else and manufacture devices with security in mind.

How do you keep your patient data safe as a healthcare organization? Let us know in the comments section below. Hope you love reading about Health Care Organizations Should Keep Data Safe .

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By Charlotte Russe

Content Writer for AMIR ARTICLES – HOME OF QUALITY CONTENT FOR EVERYONE - Read about Games, Tech, Business, Health, Find a Job, Blogging and Articles in Different Categories Available on Amir Articles

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