Where Do Healthcare Breaches Come From?

While we have seen an increase in healthcare data breaches stemming from vendor vulnerabilities, there can be a variety of sources.

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Recent breaches have demonstrated various sources of data breaches.

One source is from vendors and vendor tools. 

We have seen a large uptick in vendor cyber attacks, as cybercriminals have found it easier to hack vendors than the healthcare entities directly. Many vendors have less security measures in place than healthcare entities.

A second source of breaches is employees. 

Employees wrongfully accessing patient charts is a large source of healthcare breaches. Employees can also be a source of vulnerability if they click on phishing links or ransomware.

A third source is analytical tools. 

Analytical tools may be used to capture information and perform data analysis on behalf of healthcare entities. However, they may be used by various websites and could violate HIPAA in their collection of protected health information.

How can you protect your practice from the above risks? 

First, make sure all of your security is up to date. Protect your own data as much as possible through encryption, firewalls, and more.

You then want to make sure you require adequate protection from vendors through your contracts and business associate agreements. You should also routinely audit vendors and inquire about their security measures.

Finally, you should train your employees routinely and comprehensively on their duties and on potential risks. We often recommend utilizing fake phishing emails as training devices.

We also help our clients ensure that they are protected through their agreements and we provide thorough employee training.

If you have questions or need help with your healthcare contracts, employee training, or security, contact Rickard & Associates today.

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Do you need help with updating your Business Associate Agreement or negotiating contracts with third-party vendors?  We can help. To contact us about your Business Associate Agreement, your vendor contracts or your other legal needs, call us today.

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