Healthcare Technology Featured Article

January 07, 2016

A Third of Healthcare Records Will Be Compromised by Cyberattacks in 2016


The healthcare industry always seems to get kicked around when it comes to cybersecurity. A report by IDC’s Health Insights group projects a tough year for healthcare records ahead. It indicates that a third of all healthcare records will not only be attacked, but will actually be compromised by cyberattacks. That is a staggering number. Healthcare records are filled with private identifiable information that are fertile vectors for identity theft, fraud, privacy intrusions and much more.

To make matters worse, thanks to the Affordable Care Act, many health records now mandate the disclosure of personal lifestyle choices. The threat and certainty of the prediction indicates that the information held by healthcare organizations is more valuable and therefore more highly targeted than ever before.  Healthcare organizations are already pressured by a massive array of regulations, industry pressures, insurance matters, compliance, and many issues that affect information technology directly. The cumulative effects of these circumstances plus restricted budgetary realities mean that proper security regulations and technologies may not be available for these organizations to protect patient data as well as they could.

The report also cites how healthcare fraud has cost the industry from $74 billion to $247 billion a year in the U.S., according to statistics put out by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Fraudulent billing is one such significant problem that has as much as a double digit effect on the industry. IDC prescribes heightened security awareness and training to reduce attacks such as spear phishing and social engineering attacks. It also advocates the integration of sophisticated security analytics software that can help reduce threats from partners and threats from the inside of their organizations. 

The report also predicts that supercomputers such as IBM's Watson systems will reduce patient deaths and treatment costs by 10 percent by the year 2018. It also predicts the arrival of routine virtual healthcare across the country. 




Edited by Kyle Piscioniere





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