You might think that cyber criminals would primarily target banking institutions or retailers, due to the potential for instant access to debit card numbers. And those events certainly do happen. But for those in the healthcare industry, vigilance toward cyber security is equally important. Why?

Cyber criminals aren’t just after credit or debit card numbers. One of their most valued currencies is personal information, and healthcare organizations like hospitals, clinics, and insurance companies represent a gold mine of opportunity. Patient records contain everything a con artist needs to steal their identity.

A stolen identity is actually far more valuable than a single card number. The reason is because most people discover suspicious credit or debit card activity quickly and cancel those cards. But sensitive personal information can be used to create fake IDs, take out loans, obtain multiple credit cards, and effectively steal a person’s entire identity (and do massive amounts of financial damage) before they even suspect anything is wrong.

Cyber criminals typically aren’t out to prey on a single person, either. What they really want is reams of personal information that they can then sell in bulk on the black market. That’s where the real money is involved, regarding data theft.

Still, many healthcare providers today remain unaware of the destructive potential of the data housed within their files. They tend to focus on HIPAA compliance issues, which are certainly important, but overlook the proper risk management associated with internet security. While self protection is important, transmitting information to third-party vendors with weak protection protocol can put everyone at risk.

Data protection must always involve multiple levels, from the network itself, to connected devices, to storage to transmission and beyond. Consulting with data security specialists can help healthcare organizations protect sensitive information at every level, and guard against the potential liability of a data theft event. Call us at 888-RING-MY-TECH, and we’ll help you troubleshoot your organization’s data protection strategy, and update your security if necessary.