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Beefing Up Cyber Security Funding

Is your hospital or practice prepared in case of some ransomeware attack? You might want to look into beefing up your cyber security funding if not because just because it hasn’t happened yet, doesn’t mean it won’t. Earlier in 2017, hospitals in the UK were hit hard in the wake of global Wannacry ransomeware attacks, which made their government boost their cybersecurity funding to more than $65 million to improve security at hospitals, especially those that act as trauma centers.

But not everyone is beefing up their cyber security and many wonder whether the Department of health and Human Services in the States will do so, too. Currently, they are trying to recover “inappropriate” HITECH Act electronic health record incentive payments that were being made to a few healthcare professionals, which can in turn actually make them want to weaken any cybersecurity efforts. As they try to get back money from money and resource-strapped healthcare professions, they’ll actually be turning their backs on cybersecurity efforts.

But there are some efforts in the United States to improve healthcare sector cybersecurity, including opening a new cyber information sharing center by the Department of Health and Human Services. But some members of Congress are trying to push for things that could replace security investment by some providers. But according to Mary Chaput, CFO and compliance officer at cybersecurity consulting firm Clearwater Complaince, trying to recoup HITECH incentive payments will hurt cybersecurity. Instead, she suggests that they consider ways to ensure healthcare entities conduct effective risk analyses – something that many haven’t done yet based on federal health data breach investigations. By giving the m the tools they need to understand how to do something that’s needed, they’ll be able to do it right and make it effective for their organization.

Meanwhile, the UK’s government is supporting local organizations mitigate their immediate risks with cybersecurity by broadcasting alerts about cyber threats and providing them with a hotline for dealing with such incidents, as well as sharing best practices with them and having on-site assessments.

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