Focus on People and Technologies to Manage Health Care Security Risks Through 2017

January 18, 2017 @ 11:40 AM
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2 min read

Year-over-year increases in the number and variety of cyberthreats has led IT decision-makers in all sectors to direct cash toward cyberdefense. Industry chiefs are particularly determined to improve operational activities related to health care security.

IDC predicted that global IT security spending will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 8.3 percent and total investment will increase from $73.7 billion to $101.6 billion between 2016 and 2020. More specifically, security spending in health care will rise at a compound annual growth rate of 10.3 percent, the fastest rate for any sector.

Doctor’s Orders: Three Winning Health Care Security Strategies for 2017

The good news, according to Healthcare IT News, is that the industry is beginning to take action against attackers. According to testimony from security experts and other market sources, IT decision-makers should focus on three key areas of health care security through 2017.

1. Plan, Plan and Plan Again

There is no substitute for great preparation. Solid risk assessment and documentation can help security teams build a strong business case and ensure that cash is invested in the right areas of health care security.

All health care executives should be concerned about the potential risks and damages of a cyberattack. IT decision-makers and their business peers must ensure that all services are covered, from medical records to email systems and imaging technologies.

Planning and preparation should also extend to vendor partners. Health care professionals must conduct thorough risk assessments and ensure that the suppliers of these systems have track records of trust and provision.

2. Pay Attention to People and Policies

IT decision-makers need to create dedicated teams of specialists to deal with the health care security threat. Qualified staff will be in high demand as the skills gap continues to grow.

The key to success, according to Healthcare IT News, is to focus on staff training. Leaders should expose existing staff to new threats and ways of working by using as many training methods as possible, both online and offline.

Governance also remains a key concern. Employees should understand the rules and regulations for safe data use. Security workers, meanwhile, must stay on top of compliance. They should also check and patch all systems and connected devices routinely.

3. Find the Right Mix of Software and Services

The massive scale and scope of health care security threats may well influence some IT decision-makers to invest heavily in preventative tools, including multifactor authentication, malware protection and security information and event management (SIEM).

A recent HealthITSecurity article encouraged IT decision-makers to look beyond their comfort zones and consider next-generation security systems. New technological developments in areas such as machine learning and artificial intelligence will enhance visibility and detection.

Software should not be your only line of defense. Cybersecurity partnerships can help executives improve their health care security postures. According to IDC, services will represent 45 percent of all security spending by 2020, with managed security accounting for much of that investment.

Mark Samuels
Tech Journalist

Mark Samuels is an experienced business technology journalist with an outstanding track record in research. He specializes in the role of chief information o...
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