4 Steps to Mitigate Future Healthcare Cyberattacks

Security Boulevard

Jonathan Langer

Healthcare institutions are on edge, and not for the reason you’d think. It’s not entirely because of stretched resources due to COVID-19. Instead, they fear the rising number of healthcare cyberattacks. By October 2020, Health and Human Services (HHS) received reports from 412 healthcare organizations that more than 20 million individuals had been affected by data breaches, and the number of incidents only continues to rise. We’ve seen a large ransomware attack against a nationwide hospital system, Universal Health Services, in September 2020, which resulted in a system shutdown. In Germany, when an attacker hit a hospital, a critically ill woman perished because of delays in treatment.

The most recent Ryuk threat, reported at the end of October 2020 by the FBI in conjunction with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), underscores the escalation by attackers. Nor should we expect this to change in the coming year. If a stressed healthcare system in the midst of a pandemic has not garnered sympathy from cybercriminals, nothing will. When the “next normal” starts, there will be no reprieve.

Escalating Cyberattacks Threaten Healthcare Institutions
Attacks are becoming more sophisticated over time. The implications in a healthcare setting are...

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