All healthcare organizations are at risk of a cyber attack. Bad actors don’t target organizations based on size or services provided, so it’s difficult to predict risk. They seek out vulnerable connections and devices and take advantage of these weaknesses. Here are some of the greatest threats to healthcare organizations and how to mitigate the risks.
Healthcare’s Biggest Cybersecurity Threats
In healthcare, any threat that causes vulnerability issues can cause facility chaos, disruption of care, and even harm to patients. For example, a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) or ransomware attack can lock up medical systems that run instruments and devices for the emergency room, operating room, and intensive care unit. Unlike most other industries, this disruption can cause physical harm or even death.
Other risks include data theft of personal health and financial information. These types of cyber attacks often breach a healthcare provider’s environment without detection. They extract as much protected health information as they can, then use it to commit health insurance fraud, sell stolen identities on the dark web, and more. Theft of financial data is another threat, though that’s prevalent in all industries.
Assessing Your Organization’s Security Risk
To determine where you need to bolster security, start by assessing your organization’s risks and potential impacts. A security risk assessment from a cybersecurity consulting firm involves looking at how a potential cybersecurity incident would impact your organization’s ability to accomplish its mission and objectives.
There are so many cybersecurity solutions on the market that it can be difficult to decide what your company needs. A security assessment will help you more clearly prioritize the most important areas to safeguard. Corsica’s cybersecurity consulting experts work collaboratively with clients to conduct risk assessments. Together we look at your network infrastructure, user practices, current device protections, and applications and data. We discuss the impact a hypothetical incident would have and then provide a prioritized list of recommendations.
How to Protect Your Healthcare Organization and Patients
Better employee cyber hygiene
The best place to start protecting your healthcare organization’s assets and patients is with employees since they are generally the weakest link in any company’s security posture. Adequate and ongoing training can improve employee cyber hygiene and reduce the risk of breaches and attacks via:
- Lost or shared devices
- Weak password and device use policies
Those are just some examples of ways bad actors take advantage of employee vulnerabilities. Even with costly cyber defense solutions, an employee can inadvertently (or intentionally) allow a breach. So in addition to training, healthcare organizations may consider stricter candidate screening and tighter access permissions.
A zero trust mindset
Many people work remotely, even in healthcare. Because they connect to their organizations’ systems from different locations, cybersecurity tools can no longer trust a device based on location. A zero trust mindset means limiting access to prevent more breaches and minimizes damage. That focus–for both internal users and third-party integrations–is on providing access to individual sessions using protections like continuous verification and least privileged access.
Corsica Cybersecurity for Healthcare
Whatever the size or focus of your healthcare organization, it’s imperative to prevent interruption attacks, as well as protect health information. Our cybersecurity consulting services mitigate cybersecurity threats for healthcare organizations by offering risk assessments, managed cybersecurity, and employee training and testing.
Would you like to know how your healthcare organization would be impacted by a cybersecurity event? Schedule a security assessment with Corsica today.