According to GuidePoint Research and Intelligence Team, ransomware continues to be the biggest threat to healthcare entities.
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Over 540 healthcare organizations reported breaches to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) in 2023.
The majority of the attacks were carried out by established groups with well-defined tactics.
Historically, healthcare data was considered ‘off-limits’ for hackers as targeting healthcare data was a quick way to receive government attention. However, in recent years, healthcare entities have become a primary target.
Many of the established hackers are sophisticated in their attacks. This means that healthcare entities must be sophisticated in their defenses.
It is essential that healthcare entities take measures to protect themselves against these hackers and continuously monitor for threats.
How can you protect your healthcare entity today?
- Review your policies and procedures as they relate to breach readiness and response. Are they sufficient? Are all staff members adequately trained? If not, this may be a good place to start.
- Make sure that your technology is working for you, not against you. Are your firewalls and off-site backups running smoothly? Are all updates and patches routinely taken care of? Do you have cyber insurance? It is incredibly important to know how quickly you could have operations up and running if you were locked out of all systems today. Know what steps you would need to take and make sure that you are able to act quickly.
- Educate, educate, educate. Your breach readiness plan is only as good as your newest employees. Make sure all employees are trained regularly on all policies and procedures. Everyone should know what to do in the even to a breach.
- Test your systems. You can have external entities help you test your systems so that you know what to expect if you are hacked.
- Know who to call. If you experience a breach, one of the first things you should do is call your healthcare lawyer. They will know what needs to be reported and how best to respond to the situation.
If you need help protecting your practice, we’re here to help. Call Rickard & Associates for all of your legal needs today.
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