Common Cybersecurity Mistakes Physicians Make

By Apurva Komandur

Healthcare organizations are extremely vulnerable to cyberattacks and remain one of the most breached sectors. They are ideal victims for hackers as they often use outdated security software and house significant sensitive data. Most cyberattack incidents involve patients’ data being compromised, and unfortunately, doctors may unknowingly contribute to major cybersecurity issues.

Some of the most common cybersecurity mistakes made at medical offices include weak password management, unsecure data storing and sharing, and using outdated software. Weak passwords are one of the top causes of data breaches. Additionally, many doctors store patient records unencrypted which is a huge risk, along with sharing sensitive information through email. Finally, keeping up with software updates can take care of important fixes and patches to prevent hackers from exploiting security vulnerabilities.

Doctors can improve cybersecurity by creating complex and unique passwords for all online accounts, regularly updating passwords, and storing them safely. Multi-factor authentication can also add an additional layer of security. In addition, encrypting patient information and medical files can prevent data leaks. Using a VPN for internet connection can help protect the connection from third-party assessors, such as hackers. Finally, doctors should be educated and aware of cybersecurity risks to prevent ransomware attacks such as phishing emails, downloading malware, or sharing sensitive information with impersonators.

For more information on cyberattacks and cybersecurity, click here to read the article or view our additional resources below.

9 Reasons Compliance Does Not Mean Your Practice Data is Secure

Cyber attacks  target valuable data that can be used for other purposes, seek to wrest ransom out of organizations that rely on quick access to information, or blatantly try to cause harm or seek revenge. As a small medical practice you might think, “Who would want access to our information when there are so many bigger fish to catch?” But your practice has information on thousands of patients, and you might be surprised to find out that lots of people are eager to dig into those files. Their reasons vary widely from simple snooping to identity theft, prescription scams, tax fraud, and false Medicare/insurance claims.

Read our Knowledge Drop to learn about the simple and shocking ways data can be compromised as well as the importance of implementing a cybersecurity plan for your practice.

Apurva Komandur is a student and Marketing Intern at Amazing Charts. She is interested in sharing valuable information to help practices flourish.

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