Digital technology has made it easier and more efficient to deliver patient care and provide improved outcomes. However, the rise of technology and the growing interconnectedness between various healthcare systems come with a risk of cybersecurity threats. The benefits of healthcare technology is undeniable. Electronic health records have become crucial to improving patient outcomes and diagnostics. This has also led to an unfortunate increase in cybersecurity threats. Read on to learn so much more about these threats and how you can protect your healthcare facility against them!
As the healthcare industry becomes more connected, the risk of cyber theft increases. The two main kinds of theft are:
- Outside theft is when hackers from outside healthcare organizations hack into patient and medical systems to steal and collect plenty of data, mainly for financial gain. They may use patients’ personal information to submit some fraudulent claims to any health insurers. Outside theft could also include hackers forcing healthcare organizations to pay a hefty ransom in return for restoring any patient data systems.
- Insider misuse, which comes in the form of theft of patient data for financial gain. Other kinds of inside misuse include curiosity, or unwarranted access to data unrelated to the delivery of care and convenience, or overriding security protocols to make a job easier. Unintentional actions like human error, including mistyping information or clicking on phishing emails, make up the other half of misuse cases.
A good way to prevent these measures is outsourcing IT duties to a professional cybersecurity company. The same type of company could also train employees on what to look out for to avoid potential hackers or malicious hacking attempts.
IT Challenges in Healthcare
The heavily increased use of IT in healthcare has provided many benefits such as improved communication between patients and doctors, automation of manual tasks, and improved overall communication between physicians caring for patients. IT and digitization have also strongly empowered patients to make better decisions about their care, as patients have better access about their health through their EHRs and patient portals. The other benefits of IT and digitalization in healthcare include:
- Reduced inefficiencies
- Lowered healthcare costs
- Improved healthcare access
- Enhanced care quality
- Providing more personalized medicines for patients
To achieve these benefits, connected technologies are needed, although they can also be targets for attacks and data breaches. Despite external breaches surpassing internal misuse as the main source of security risk, internal misuse is more common in the healthcare industry than others. For any IT leaders trying to minimize attacks, strengthening cybersecurity remains the top priority. One other challenge for IT managers within healthcare is managing interoperability, which is cited as the main priority among technical leaders.
If you worry about your healthcare facility’s cybersecurity, give En-Net Services a call today!
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