Ontario Healthcare Organizations Are Often A Target for Cyberattacks
The healthcare industry is a frequent target for cyberattacks. Healthcare organizations in Kingston, ON, and Eastern Ontario are becoming increasingly susceptible to online attacks.
The attacks may compromise sensitive patient information. The following are some of the main reasons why healthcare is one of the biggest targets for online attacks.
1. Confidential Patient Data is Worth a Lot of Money
The data that hospitals and healthcare organizations store is private. Hackers know that selling it could earn them a lot of money. Healthcare data is gold in the black market. It contains all of a person’s identifiable information. In a single cyber-attack, hackers may access data from thousands of patients. Trustwave estimates that on the black market, healthcare reports may be worth up to $250 per record. They are more expensive than financial and other files.
All organizations have the legal responsibility to protect their patient’s data. If they do not have secure systems, they may end up spending lots of money on ransomware attacks. The threat of ransomware is real, especially for struggling organizations that may not have the finances to address cyber-attacks.
2. Easy Entry
Medical devices offer attackers a convenient entry point. Even though technological advancements in the healthcare sector have had lots of benefits, cybercriminals take advantage of them. Appliances that are responsible for dispensing drugs or monitoring heartbeats do not necessarily keep security in mind. Even though many hospital devices do not keep records of patients’ data, hackers may use them to attack servers and steal confidential data. If hackers manage to take over the system completely, healthcare practitioners may have trouble providing patients with the care they need.
Hackers realize that some medical devices may be the key to accessing confidential information even though they don’t contain patient data. They are an easy target since they don’t have the same level of security as devices such as computers. The best way to fix this problem is to ensure those network devices are as secure as possible.
Unfortunately, many hospitals have so many devices that they cannot stay on top of security. They are in charge of massive amounts of data. All their networks are a potential entry point for hackers.
The members of staff do not always have the time or skill to identify threats to their systems.
Hackers target healthcare because compromising one device makes it easy to access entire networks.
3. Members of Staff Need to Access Data Remotely
The healthcare industry is demanding. There are times when members of staff may need to access information remotely. This opens up new risks for hackers to exploit. Connecting to devices remotely is dangerous as their devices are not always secure. The members of staff do not always have the training to handle cybersecurity threats or secure their devices.
Unfortunately, healthcare data has become a prime target for hackers. They target it for its high value, ease of access, and lack of sufficient preventive measures. The COVID 19 pandemic presents a higher level of risk as many health facilities now have to deal with large amounts of data. They may lack the time or strategies to implement sufficient cybersecurity.
Canadian organizations that facilitate response to the pandemic are at a high risk of cyber-attacks. Hackers may access and steal vital information about on-going research.
As the healthcare industry continues to face cybersecurity threats, leaders in the industry must invest time, effort, and resources to protect them. One of the most important things to keep in mind is to ensure that all the members of staff have sufficient education. They should be able to identify and avoid potential threats.