As healthcare technologies continue to evolve, there’s an abundance of healthcare data storage and preservation methods available. Unfortunately, this also means that the chances of this wealth of information being targeted by cybercriminals are higher than ever.

This is where data security and management come into play. Let’s take a closer look at how HIPAA compliance correlates with cybersecurity practices in the healthcare industry.

stethoscope representing healthcare

 

Why Does Healthcare Data Need to Be Protected?

Healthcare data includes an array of corporate information, such as personal health information (PHI) collected from patients, financial information of the healthcare practice, medical research data, and more. This sensitive information is susceptible to malware and other malicious attacks, which can have severe consequences. Personal health information, in particular, is targeted by cybercriminals as it can be reused multiple times for fraud and identity theft. Thus, all medical and healthcare data needs to be preserved using the highest security protocols.

 

Healthcare Data Security and HIPAA Compliance

Most healthcare organizations in the United States devise their cybersecurity policies around HIPAA compliance. According to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), healthcare organizations are required to cover different entities that deal with patient health information and business associates who have access to this data. In doing so, HIPAA protects sensitive information pertaining to patients, such as test results, treatment details, and demographic and personal identification data. This information cannot be disclosed without the patient's consent, and a breach in this policy can compromise the person’s security and privacy.

Healthcare organizations are required to adhere to the HIPAA Security Rule that specifies that all covered entities must protect electronic health information and take the steps necessary to prevent an administrative, physical, or technical breach of data. However, HIPAA compliance alone isn’t enough for this. While complying with HIPAA rules is necessary, healthcare organizations also need to invest in additional cybersecurity strategies to enhance their security defenses.

 

HIPAA Compliance & Cybersecurity

Being HIPAA compliant is just step one of turning up your data security. Cybersecurity strategies act as an additional layer of protection against technical breaches and strengthen your privacy and security plan. Since most of the healthcare information stored and used nowadays is transferred via IoT medical devices, the data is at a high risk of cyber threats and attacks. Therefore, healthcare practices need to devise additional security strategies for preventing data breaches.

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Over the years, the healthcare industry has rapidly adjusted to cybersecurity management software and strategies needed to protect data. Today, cybersecurity efforts are implemented in combination with HIPAA compliance measures to keep patient data safe.

Our cybersecurity team at 3i International provides cyber security assessment and management and security strategies to the healthcare industry. Contact us today for more details.