Don’t Become One of the Blues: Healthcare Data Breach Prevention

Jun 17, 2015

CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield is the third of the ‘Blues’ to suffer a data breach this year, and it won’t be the last for healthcare organizations operating without guaranteed network security.

Over the past year, three major healthcare data breaches have occurred – the most recent being CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield. Last month, the healthcare provider suffered a data breach in which hackers stole the healthcare information of 1.1 million CareFirst customers.

Serving only the Maryland, DC and Northern Virginia are, the recent CareFirst data breach is on the smaller side in comparison with its predecessors. Anthem and Premera are both ‘Blues,’ members of the BlueCross Blueshield healthcare insurance network, and suffered breaches that put 80 million and 11 million customers at risk, respectively.

These recent data breaches are exactly the reason we predicted that network security was going to be the number one concern for healthcare information technology (IT) departments in 2015.

According to the Identity Theft Resource Center, the healthcare and medical sector has accounted for the highest percentage – 42.5 percent in 2014 – of total hackings in any industry.

Your healthcare organization doesn’t have to become one of the ‘Blues.’ Focus on keeping your data secure on three different levels; sending the data, receiving the data and storing the data.

A hybrid fax solution with guaranteed security and redundancy can support the security needs of a healthcare organization through all the stages of data transport.

Sharing Healthcare Data

A secure fax network will ensure that the healthcare information shared by physicians and healthcare providers isn’t susceptible to middle-man attacks. Look for a solution that can provide you with 100 percent security for both structured and unstructured data – a pain point for many healthcare organizations protecting the data of millions of patients.

A survey sponsored by ID Experts concluded that 91 percent of health care organizations have had at least one data breach involving the loss or theft of patient data in the last two years, and 59 percent of their business partners have experienced the same.

Unstructured data is harder to secure and more readily shared than traditional structured data, leaving healthcare organizations without guaranteed network security at risk for data breach.

Make Sure Your Data Doesn’t Leak

Having a secure way to store your data is key – but it’s not the only aspect of data storage you need to think about.

When data is shared amongst healthcare professionals and organizations, the data leaves the secure servers of your personal healthcare organizations and is traversed across traditional telephony infrastructure or PSTN before it reaches its final destination.

Last year, the cost of a security breach leapt 282% in healthcare according to NetIQ. That growth is staggering in the face of network security risks that the healthcare industry is now facing.

Healthcare data doesn’t have to be shared using traditional infrastructure – a hybrid fax solution can make sure your data is never stored off-site and stays securely within your network.

The etherFAX Secure Exchange Network (SEN) is a hybrid fax solution that100 percent guarantees the secure transport and delivery of your healthcare data. For more information on how etherFAX can ensure you don’t become one of the ‘Blues,’ contact us.

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