Healthcare organizations use patient information not only to check their health but also to drive significant research that can help the industry. Especially as cyber-attacks on the healthcare industry increase in volume, organizations need to think about the steps they can take to ensure that critical patient data is secure from threats detection around us.
Healthcare Data Security is a critical component for maintaining compliance with regulations of the healthcare organization, such as HIPAA, HITECH, HHS, and PCI. The healthcare industry is at the risk of revealing specifically sensitive information and pushing it into the hands of risky cyber adversaries, which results in significant financial, legal harm without any proper security arrangements in place. As the healthcare industry continues to digital transformation, a cyber-security risk management program is more necessary than ever for the healthcare industry to secure patients data.
What is Healthcare Data Security?
Healthcare data security is a complex and critical part of a functioning cyber-security risk management program. The healthcare industry collects and saves patient data, on the other side cyber-criminals are discovering new ways to harm the confidential nature of data. Healthcare data security confirms that the Health Information of a patient is secure.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act 1996 is a law that requires the healthcare industry to keep in agreement with several regulations. The privacy rule of HIPAA addresses the use and disclosure of patient health-related information and reserves standards for the rights of the person to control and understand how their information has been utilized. As data privacy concerns are rising, regulatory compliance standards are increasing in figures. For the healthcare organization, we cannot overlook the HIPAA regulations. Healthcare organizations should take these standards as a method to prepare their cyber risk management program.
Why Security of Healthcare Data Is Important?
The collection of patient data is helpful in researching endeavors, but it also displays exclusive challenges related to security. In the “Ponemon 2020 Cost of a Data Breach Report, the cost of the healthcare data breach has reached an average of $7.13 million, a rise of 10% from the previous year”. Data security is critical to allowing organizations to take advantage of patient information deprived of compromising secrecy and security, in consequence, deficient cyber risk management programs in the healthcare organization.
How to Secure Healthcare Patient Data
The healthcare industry must be ready to secure critical patient data. The healthcare network grows in complexity, the risk of cybercrime is increasing day by day.
There are some tips and key points for how to secure healthcare patient data:
Track access and limits to sensitive information
The Healthcare industry should carry out limited access management, to the most critical patient information. It ensures that only relevant people who need it to do their job work will access certain data. Zero Trust Security process functions on the reliance that no one in the industry can trust completely with full access. It is easier for security teams to find unauthorized users and define who is causing the problem, by tracking the access to the important information.
Training of Employees
As a result of the healthcare industry’s movement towards remote work models permanently, employees are widely besieged by cybercriminals. It is important to give awareness to the employees about social engineering strategies and must get training on general cybersecurity sensitivities and community threats detection. This can help to stop these threats detection before they become big issues.
Cybersecurity risk assessment is a way for the healthcare industry to analyze its security controls and get an understanding of its abilities to efficiently respond and remediate threats detection. Cybersecurity assessments are within the context of an organization’s business purpose so it becomes easy to find weaknesses and start putting the controls to secure critical data
Monitor Insider Threats and Third-Party Vendors
As we can see that the healthcare industry continues to embrace digital transformation and take advantage of contractors and third-party vendors, we cannot overlook these insider threats when building a risk management program. More often, these organizations will have access to some of the most sensitive data of your company. If as a result of a third-party vendors’ negligence or actions a data breach occurs, your organization will be held responsible. It is difficult to check third-party vendors continuously and their security controls, like you, do for your organization.
Encrypt Sensitive Patient Data
Encryption is a common data protection method for the healthcare industry, which is an extra layer of security that cybercriminals have to gain access to data. Patient facts must be encrypted in transit to make sure compliance with HIPAA security rules and regulations and other relevant standards.
By following the above tips we can protect our healthcare-sensitive data from cyber-attacks effectively.