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Two thirds of healthcare organisations suffered cybersecurity incident in 2019

(Image credit: Image source: Shutterstock/Wichy)

More than two thirds of healthcare companies (67 per cent) experienced some sort of cybersecurity incidents over the past 12 months, new research has found.

A new report by Clearswift looks to “highlight the serious threat” data breaches and cyberattacks pose to the data that healthcare organisations create.

The biggest cause of these breaches isn’t phishing or employees visiting malicious websites – it’s hardware. Third-party devices carrying malware, such as IoT gear or USB sticks, are to blame for almost half (48 per cent) of the incidents within the industry.

Sharing information with unauthorised personnel, ignoring security procedures and phishing are also important factors.

“The healthcare sector holds important patient data, so it is alarming to see such high numbers of security incidents occurring in the industry,” said Alyn Hockey, VP of Product Management, Clearswift.

“The healthcare sector needs to securely share data across departments and organisations in order to facilitate excellent patient care. With the proliferation of third-party devices in this process, it’s more important than ever that the industry bolsters its cyber security efforts to reduce the risk of everything from unwanted data loss to malicious attacks and focusses on keeping patient data safe and secure.”

Clearswift’s report also looks at the budget allocated towards cybersecurity, and found that less than a quarter (24 per cent) of the respondents said the budget was adequate. Even when there is enough money, in many cases (46 per cent) it’s not being spent properly.