Posted April 9, 2018 by admin in articles

5 Ways to Avoid a Healthcare Data Leak


Exclusive Article By Lindsey Patterson at EMRIndustry

If you are in the healthcare industry, you need to protect your data. If it is leaked, you are putting patients’ information on the open market. Not only is this bad for your records, but it could get you into legal trouble. Here are five ways to avoid being hacked:
1. Assess Your Data Threat Model

The first step to keeping a leak from happening is understand that you are vulnerable. Even major governments can be hacked. And you need to understand your threat model. This means where the threats are coming from.

There are various places your threat could come from. The first is inside your company. The employees that work for you have access to a lot of data. If they become disgruntled, they could decide to destroy it or even sell it to the black market.

The other threat vector is ransomware. This is a virus that a hacker puts on your system. They then steal your data and threaten to lock you out of your system or sell your information if you don’t pay them a huge ransom.
2. Phishing Training

One of the ways that hackers can get to your information to leak it is through the phishing scam. This is an email strategy where they impersonate people in your company and trick other workers into clicking on a link that appears to be authentic, such as a file of patient information. When they click it, it runs software that sucks data out of the system and posts it online. Make sure you have phishing training to identify what kind of links are suspicious and what to do if they are uncertain that someone is who they say they are.
3. IT Staffing

Protecting your data involves a lot of network administration. You need to use the right code and the right setup. Therefore you need to invest in the IT staff you have on hand. Hire more workers if you feel that you are understaffed. And make sure to verify employment information to see that they have the right certifications and no criminal background.
4. Monitor Your Network

If you don’t monitor your network, you won’t know that something strange is going on. When someone hacks your system to get to your data, they will often hide low once they gain access. Then they will extract the data slowly or watch your data from the inside of the system. Then, they will attempt to move it to another server to leak it completely. Hired managed detection and response providers can watch your network and respond by locking down the network or analyzing the threat before it gets to be too late to stop the data from leaking.
5. Upgrade Your Equipment

If you have old equipment, it could threaten your ability to keep your data safe. Older equipment has been on the market longer so there are more threats that have been designed to get around it. It might not have the right security protocol already built in or the power to keep up with advanced viruses that hackers would use to target it.


It is always worth upgrading your hospital’s equipment to ensure they are protecting your data at all levels. All it takes is one leak to wreak havoc on your entire business in a few minutes.


The healthcare industry is one of the most vulnerable to data hacks. If your data is leaked or locked down for ransom, the money needed to clean up the mess could bankrupt you. So use the best practices above and enjoy the peace of mind that your data is protected.

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