The Ethical Hacker: How They Can Save Your Practice

Ever Heard of Ethical Hacking?

Throughout this blog series, I have mentioned how cyberattacks are on the rise, as much as 118% during 2020 alone. From Microsoft to the US Department of Defense to small business healthcare, everyone is at risk for ransomware attacks. Remember, all it takes is one accidental click on a phishing link to compromise your entire network. Hacker tradecraft is becoming increasingly sophisticated and difficult to spot. They often lurk in your network for weeks to months, spying on you and slowly copying your HIPAA-protected health information. Disguised as a friendly company to your antivirus software, they plan their attack with precision and strike at the perfect time. The scary part is you may not even be aware of the attack for months, as is often the case.

As hackers become more and more adept at their tradecraft, tech-savvy efforts to stop them in their tracks must keep pace. At the end of the day your peace of mind comes from knowing you pay a managed service provider (MSP) to keep your data safe and secure, but are they doing everything in their power to appropriately protect you? Do they use the most up-to-date hacker tradecraft secrets to prevent entry into your PHI? They may tell you yes, but how can you be sure? The answer is simple – utilize an ethical hacker and allow them to try and get in. Are you brave enough?

 

Pardon our Asking, but May we Break-In?

Just as you would advise a patient to maintain routine physical and dental check-ups for optimum health, so should you when it comes to your IT network security setup. A reputable MSP should employ the use of periodic ethical hacking to thoroughly test your network using the most sophisticated hacking techniques. Though it may sound scary, periodically allowing the white knight hacker to try and break-in is crucial to the health and wellbeing of your IT network. An attempted intentional break in reveals the true integrity of your system, identifying flaws without causing any damage to your network.

 

Planning Resource Allocation

The gap analysis report provided by your managed service provider after the “break-in” will paint a clear picture of your current system health. Are you up to date like you hoped? Are your servers or computers adequately protected? Are you in need of new hardware or software? When done correctly by the right MSP, it will be immediately clear that it is not a money grab attempt, but rather a list of weaknesses and a carefully designed correction plan. Your cybersecurity company will partner with you for long-term protection and growth. Healthcare practices face a unique and complicated list of regulations, your ethical hacker can help ensure your compliance and continued peace of mind.

IT Practice was created in 1996 with the goal of making IT fears a thing of your past. With more than 20 years of experience in network management and security, we understand the intricacies of protecting medical professionals and their practices. Contact us with your questions or a hassle-free tech analysis at media@itpractice.com.

By Heather Bratcher

Heather is the Digital Marketing Specialist for IT Practice (www.itpractice.com), a Raleigh, NC-based managed services provider specializing in medical and dental IT. She can be contacted at media@itpractice.com.