From high-profile data breaches at major health providers to a recent ransomware attack that affected more than a dozen National Health Service hospitals in the United Kingdom, the health care industry is increasingly looking to beef up security and get ahead of the hackers.
Cyberattacks targeting patient data jumped 300 percent between 2014 and 2016, according to a report from TrapX Security.
The U.S. health care industry is spending an estimated $6.2 billion a year in fines and other costs related to health data breaches, according to the Ponemon Institute.
In addition to data breaches, health systems have been hit by Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) and ransomware attacks, which can slow or shut down vital health care infrastructure.
Devices becoming significant target
As attacks on the industry grow and, perhaps of more concern, evolve, internet of medical things (IoMT) devices also are becoming a bigger target.
The vulnerability of IoMT is drawing greater scrutiny from IT professionals because internet-connected devices are proliferating in health care and have been harnessed to launch cyberattacks.
And while there is no evidence that patients have been directly harmed by an exploited device, weak security measures remain a concern.
To aid the health systems in better understanding the risks and solutions of cybersecurity and IoMT, the Center for Connected Medicine hosted a webinar exploring the threats and how the industry is responding.
Webinar focused on IoT security
The webinar, the second in a two-part series focused on IoMT, was moderated by Rasu Shrestha, MD, MBA, chief innovation officer at UPMC and executive vice president at UPMC Enterprises.
“If there’s one constant topic in almost every board room discussion, it’s cybersecurity,” Dr. Shrestha said. “The time is now for the health care industry to rise to the challenge of not just staying a step ahead, but taking an aggressive, intelligent and proactive approach to managing cyberthreats and concerns across the board.”
For the discussion, Dr. Shrestha was joined by three cybersecurity thought leaders:
- Garrett Hall, Research Director, Cybersecurity and Implementation Services, KLAS
- Beth Musumeci, Vice President, Cybersecurity, GE Healthcare
- Rob Marson, Head of Strategy and Business Development, Security Product Unit, Nokia
Go back and watch Part One of the IoMT webinar series: Harnessing the Internet of Medical Things for Value-Based Care