5 Best Practices to Avoid Security Risks

Although several industries, including education and health care, make up a significant percentage of yearly data breach counts, credit unions and banks are more prone to this risk. As per the Identity Theft Resource Center, the financial/banking/credit sector totaled 5.8% of the total data breaches in 2017.

This is up 2 percent from the first half of 2016, a bigger rise compared to every industry sector except healthcare and business. Data breaches are widespread in the healthcare sector as well. This puts patients’ sensitive and confidential medical records at risk, whether the concerned organization is small or large, affecting people at every level of a data breach.


1.     Drive better Risk Assessment

Closely assess your online transactions as well as the level of risk they pose by kind of transaction and user group to devise effective risk mitigation strategies.

Make sure that you assess particular attributes like customer type, ease of use, volume and capability of your specific transaction methods, existing security and information sensitivity, and the overall customer experience, as well as how mobile devices interact with your environment.

It is important to consider not just your financial losses, but corporate risk, liability, and reputational damage as well. And do not just do this once in a blue moon. It should be an ongoing process.

This risk assessment would help you map out potential impacts as well as the security service levels that you require.


2.     Encrypt Portable Devices

Note that in the past couple of years, many data and security breaches have happened because a portable storage or computing device containing protected financial or health information was stolen or lost.

One important thing healthcare and financial organizations should do to avert those breaches is to encrypt all portable devices that may hold patient or financial data. This includes laptops, tablets, smartphones, as well as portable USB drives.

Apart from providing encrypted devices to employees, it is also important to have a stringent policy regarding storing data on unencrypted personal devices.


3.     Educate Employees on Security Risks

Even though healthcare and financial organizations may have stellar and reliable employees, human error can always cause security issues. Whether due to malicious actions or negligence, employees are sometimes involved in healthcare and financial data breaches.

Proper training on security protocols, regulations—and timely support for staff using mobile devices—could help minimize these errors while improving overall security. Training should include:

  • What does and does not constitute a HIPAA violation
  • Effective lessons to help avoid social engineering, phishing, and other attacks which often target employees
  • Advice and guidance on choosing secure passwords.

In addition, employees must only have the information which is necessary to perform their job—keep in mind that the fewer places sensitive data is stored, the safer it is. Data minimization is one of the powerful elements of preparedness. When an employee leaves the organization, the human resource department should suspend their access to sensitive and confidential data.

4.     Vendor Management

Although a majority of vendors provide performance and risk management reports, small firms usually report that they do not have the necessary power to negotiate effectively with bigger players in the industry. Risks from vendors need to be addressed as well as constantly assessed and vetted.

You can apply pre-set standards at different stages which vendors usually go through such as planning, selection, due diligence, contract negotiations, ongoing relationships, and more importantly termination.


5.     Patch Systems and Medical Devices

Patches are important to keep systems operating at optimal levels. Keep in mind that they are usually used as a vital method to keep data secure as un-patched systems might no longer be appropriately supported.

It is worth mentioning that without a system patch, hackers could easily find weak spots that can be exploited, making breaches more likely. Unfortunately, a lot of systems don’t have effective automatic patching in place. This is because it requires more resources and time to update.

Patching organizational systems is an ongoing maintenance issue which could be costly. However, it is less expensive than a data breach.

While a majority of IT security threats that healthcare organizations usually face also impact organizations in other industries, healthcare providers have another important risk: the threat of monitoring tools, pacemakers, and other electronic medical gadgets being hacked.

As a result, one step healthcare information technology departments must take is to keep the software on these devices up to date and patched to minimize their vulnerabilities.

Cybersecurity Governance — Framework and Challenges

Posted By: seo_admin - May 16th 2019

According to the 2018 Data Breach Investigation Report published by Verizon, approximately 73% – nearly three-quarters – of all cybercrime attacks were reported to be on account of monetary data breaches and that too, by outside perpetrators. While inside attacks are equally as important, there is no strategy that vouches for the total shut-down of

Read More

Tips for Ultimate Security & Compliance in Healthcare

Posted By: seo_admin - May 9th 2019

To protect data in the healthcare sector is no simple task. Healthcare providers need to maintain a balance when they deliver quality patient care, meet strict regulatory requirements and protect patient privacy according to the rules put forward by the HIPPA and other similar regulations, like the GDPR for instance. Due to an increase in

Read More

Cybersecurity Tactics – An Expert’s Take on Monitoring Systems

Posted By: seo_admin - May 2nd 2019

Networking systems, multi-national operations, and global billion dollar organizations received a major blow in monetary losses and data compromises in 2017/18. Suffering from systemic vulnerability and lack of basic security hygiene, networking operations suffered from hundreds of thousands to billions of dollars of loss. Some institutions such as Microsoft diverted these threats and thefts by

Read More

How to Counter Health Data Security Breaches

Posted By: seo_admin - Apr 25th 2019

There is neither limit nor end to cyber attacks. Its victims can be anyone – be it an individual or an organization. The level of difficulty to prevent these catastrophes is high. The moment business fights back to prevent cyber breaches, the more efficient hackers become and find alternative ways to counter security blocks. However,

Read More

Security and Privacy in Cloud Computing – Why It Matters

Posted By: seo_admin - Apr 18th 2019

Have you ever wondered how convenient it is to use apps like Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram and various other kinds of applications in your daily life? They are easy to access, easy to use and available through technologic mediums. The reason why these apps are so efficient is because they have been available to you via

Read More