Healthcare can easily be considered some of the most sensitive data that is being stored by business and healthcare centers. It contains patient’s personal information such as birthdates, medical histories and other identifying information. If this information is breached not only are patient’s identities at risk, healthcare businesses and their reputations are as well! Identify theft of patient data can lead to healthcare fraud and yearly medical price increases. Costing both the patients and providers more money each time they need a healthcare visit.
Cyberattacks cost hospitals and the healthcare field millions of dollars in data retrieval and business recovery. According to an Accenture news article, cyber breaches will cost the healthcare industry $305 billion over the next five years. In 2014 alone, nearly 1.6 million patients had their medical information stolen from medical providers. These hacks cost the patient money as well as the business. When valuable money resources are being used to deal with cyber breaches, other areas of the healthcare industry suffer. Less money is spent on medical equipment, hiring more medical providers, and other medical resources. Instead this money is being spend on disaster relief and recovering patient data.
When a breach happens, the healthcare business then asks themselves several questions.
- How did this breach happen?
- What can we do to prevent further security threats?
- What is the most secure system for healthcare data?
Healthcare centers are required by law to keep records electronically. This means secure electronic storage is vital to the healthcare industry. Patients and providers need to be assured that the data is kept secure and is being monitored for any potential threats.
Secure ways of storing data include:
- Cloud based services: storing data in off-premise centers
- Business Continuity: Having a plan for business to continue as usual in the event of a breach or disruption.
- Data Backup and Recovery: Having data backed up and secure and being able to quickly recover this data is vital to healthcare to identify what data was hacked and to secure any additional data from being stolen.
When data is compromised in many other industries, it quickly becomes useless. Passwords and encryptions are changed and any new data becomes inaccessible to the hackers. This is not the case with healthcare data! Healthcare data is some of the most sensitive data that needs to be protected. HIPAA and privacy laws can shut down a practice if there is a data breach and patient information is compromised. Luckily, there are multiple options to secure data and protect the healthcare industries. By using several data security plans, the chances of healthcare data breaches will be reduced.
IT Practice, a HIPAA Certified Company based in Raleigh, NC , provides a wide range of IT solutions for Dental, Medical and Small Business Professionals across North Carolina and Virginia. Contact IT Practice today for a free consultation to determine your exact IT needs.