Elevating Healthcare Cybersecurity during Data Privacy Week 

With data security breaches happening far too often (and no signs of them stopping), and mounting concerns around the lack of regulations within digital apps and generative AI tools, protecting patient information is more critical than ever. As we recognize Data Privacy Week, data it should remain a top priority for every healthcare organization.  

What is data privacy and why is it important?

Long gone are the days of simply closing your blinds, or covering your hand to protect your pin number at the ATM. It’s time to consider what privacy means in the digital world? Digital privacy involves taking active control of and protecting sensitive healthcare data.  

Healthcare cybersecurity breaches that have exposed vulnerabilities in our healthcare systems impact both providers and patients. The fallout from these breaches isn’t just financial or reputational….

Data Breaches impact human lives.  

Data privacy isn’t just about compliance – it’s about preserving the very integrity of healthcare. Legal compliance is a given, but the real benefits extend far beyond. When patients trust healthcare providers with their sensitive information, it forms the foundation of a strong healthcare system.  

Data and Privacy go hand in hand.

Here are our top 7 ways to be stewards of strong data privacy in your organization. 

  1. Stay updated on regulations: Understand the constantly evolving regulatory landscape and adapt accordingly. This includes, but is not limited to, understanding HIPAA
  2. Assess the efficiency of your cloud environment with a third-party expert.  
  3. Implement robust cybersecurity measures: Employ advanced solutions like cloud security posture management (CSPM) and Managed Detection & Response (MDR) services specifically built for healthcare. Ultimately, ensure whatever system you choose provides full visibility, protection, and enforcement of security and compliance measures mapped back to healthcare regulations.  
  4. Continual risk assessment: Regularly assess and remediate compliance risks across all data sources.  
  5. Invest in cybersecurity experts: A skilled team can monitor the technology landscape for security threats.  
  6. Choose reliable vendors for data privacy and cybersecurity to ensure they follow best practices for privacy and security. When choosing how to protect your healthcare information, you can consider DIY, CSPM Software, or managed services.  
  7. Ensure employee education by training both administrative and technical staff in cybersecurity best practices, including teaching them how to identify and report potential threats.  

Individual consumers also have a responsibility to take control of their data. The National Cybersecurity Alliance provides actionable steps for individuals when engaging with and downloading digital applications. Some key questions consumers should ask are:

  1. Is the digital app worth the amount or type of sensitive data they are asking to collect?
  2. Can you alter the amount of personal information the app is requesting?
  3. Does the data directly relate to the app or service being provided?
  4. If a consumer hasn’t used the app in months, will the data initially shared continue to be collected? 

As we wrap up this Data Privacy Week, let’s pledge to make data privacy a year-round commitment. Reach out to ClearDATA to learn more about how they can help secure your healthcare organization’s future. When it comes to data privacy in healthcare, we’re all in this together.  

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