Cybersecurity is a serious concern in the modern age. This is due to the importance of digital technology in virtually every area of life. The growing numbers of hackers, internet terrorists, and data thieves have only made threats on a virtual level more prevalent. These criminals can shut down whole systems, steal massive databases of confidential information, and more. Looking forward, experts predict that cyberattacks in 2021 will continue to increase in frequency and severity.
One industry that suffers more than its fair share of such assaults is healthcare. This trillion-dollar sector is extremely vulnerable to electronic bombardment and frequently targeted. Privacy infringement, heavy financial losses, fines for HIPAA violations, and lawsuits are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to potential consequences for your clients. According to HIPAA Journal, 2020 saw a 25% rise in healthcare cyberattacks resulting in data breaches when compared to the previous year. Out of these, 642 involved the illicit accessing of at least 500 records. There are a few main reasons behind why this is so.
Vulnerability to Ransomware
Medical facilities and networks generally do not have the best technology security defenses against cyberattacks. Their adoption of such safety measures is sluggish. This makes them susceptible to all kinds of digital strikes, especially ransomware- which is a kind of malware that encrypts victims’ files. Perpetrators can then request payments in return for renewed access to the data. NPR reported on a coordinated effort to target U.S. hospitals and healthcare providers with ransomware in 2020.
Possession of Sensitive Details
The frequency of cyber offensives on healthcare is also partially attributable to the fact that it is such a juicy quarry. Medical records need to be open, shareable, and remotely accessible. This creates a natural soft spot. Facilities store vast collections of personal particulars, which are worth a pretty penny to any criminal able to auction them off. Patient documentation also happens to be easy to sell. It is popular on the black market, and, of course, the institutions it came from also want it back. Furthermore, these thieves can use any information obtained for other fraudulent and unlawful activities. This especially applies to data pertaining to high-profile figures like celebrities.
Lack of Worker Preparedness
Those in this field perform essential, in-demand tasks. They deal with constant time-consuming life-or-death crises. In other words, they are very busy individuals. Due to this, they are often reluctant to incorporate new network-related practices into existing defense processes. Professionals in this area are also often uneducated in cybersecurity in healthcare.
The whole healthcare industry is prominent, less-challenging, very attractive prey for web criminals. Hospitals and other centers also use devices that provide an easy entry point for hackers, and their electronic safeguards are often outdated. Smaller establishments have even fewer protections than larger, multi-site ones. Because of all this, the sector may see even more cyberattacks in 2021. It is crucial for your clients to take precautions against such events, including acquiring coverage.
About Connected Risk Solutions
At Connected Risk Solutions, we use our expertise and experience to provide insurance information and programs to those who serve long-term care and senior living facilities. Since 2007, we’ve been offering insurance and risk management plans designed to help our agents give their clients the ability to achieve continued growth while simultaneously protecting against loss, containing costs and increasing profitability. With three offices to serve you in Chicago, Illinois; Phoenix, Arizona; and Burlington, Connecticut, we do everything we can to make your experience with us as professional and transparent as possible. To learn more, contact us at (877) 890-9301.