Data Breaches in First Six Months of 2021

A data breach is the process in which an organization or a company faces data loss of some important confidential information or it comes in the contact of unauthorized access or disclosure of data which is supposed to be hidden, such as when a customer’s personal data is lost or stolen, a database center storing all the information is hacked or that important information is mistakenly given to the wrong person, published by OAIC’s website.

The healthcare sector reported the most cases of a data breach at 85, which accounted for almost a fifth of all notifications, stated by OAIC in the biannual report.

According to researched and observations conclusion is that malicious or criminal attacks (48 cases) were the main source of breaches within the healthcare sector, from previous reports it is observed that such data breaches are results of human error which is a “significant shift”.

Thirty-one (31) cases are reported as cyber incidents, e.g., phishing attacks and ransomware.

There was a total of 446 data breaches registered in the first six months of 2021 including all the sectors in healthcare, such as finance, legal, accounting and management, insurance, and the government. This shows a 16% downfall as compared to the July-December 2020 period. Most notifications were made in March.

Malicious or criminal attacks were the leading source of breaches, making up 289 or 65% of the total notifications. The most common type of personal information compromised in breaches is contact information.

5,000 individuals or less almost 93% are affected by data breaches, on the other hand, 100 people or less almost 65% are encountered data breaches.

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Article courtesy: Healthcare IT news

All About Incident Response Plan and Why It Is Important for You Medical Center

An incident response plan is a standardized way to plan, identify, prevent, and recuperate from a suspected cybersecurity breach. It enables an enterprise to respond to cybersecurity incidents in a timely and efficient manner, thereby protecting its data, money, and reputation.

Being a victim of a cyber-attack is harmful enough, but companies who fail to take the necessary precautions may face litigation from employees or shareholders, as well as regulatory penalties. They will also discover that their insurance provider will deny their claim if they do not follow such pre-determined procedures.

A well-developed incident response plan should make sure that proper steps are followed. It usually comprises of the following elements.

  • what role the incident response plan plays in the organization’s overall mission.
  • How an organization approach an incident plan
  • Activities that must be completed during each phase of an incident response
  • The channel of communication between the IR team and organization members
  • A method to measure the overall effectiveness of incident response capabilities

Why Incident Response Plan Is Crucial

Cyber accidents are more than just technological issues; they’re also business issues. The quicker they’re dealt with, the less harm they’ll do.

IRPs shorten the time it takes to remediate an issue, which can have a big effect on a company’s budget. According to a 2017 IBM report, if cyberattacks are controlled within 30 days, the loss to the organization can be reduced by up to $1 million.

Despite the clear cut importance of an incident response plan, about 77% of the organization doesn’t have any IR plan (Ponemon)

These numbers are alarming, particularly when you realize that 57% of organizations say the time it takes to fix cyber incidents in their organizations is getting longer, and 65% say the seriousness of the attacks they’re facing is getting worse.

Creating And Incident Response Plan

Medical centers usually lack the in-house expertise necessary to create or implement a successful plan on their own. Whether they’re fortunate enough to have a dedicated team, they’re either tired from a barrage of false positives from their automated detection systems, or they’re too preoccupied with current activities to keep up with the new risks.

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Why IT Security is Important for Medical Practices

In healthcare, instant access to patient data could be critical. If doctors can’t get the patient’s
info they need, the standard of healthcare can be severely compromised with potentially
unpredictable consequences.

The privacy and security of patient health information is a top priority for patients and their
families, health care providers and professionals, and the government. Laws require many of the key
persons and organizations that handle health information to have policies and security safeguards
in place to protect your health information — whether it is stored on paper or electronically.

This means that the data privacy and storage is of vital importance in healthcare. Downtime must be
avoided at all costs. However the data storage and privacy has become increasingly diffi cult,
time-consuming and expensive for healthcare organizations.


There are several reasons for this. To begin with, the volume of healthcare data is growing at an
astronomical rate, driven in part by necessary efforts at healthcare organizations to digitize all
their patient health records.

Another driver of data growth is diagnostic devices like CT scanners, MRIs and X-ray machines,
which produce massive amounts of imaging data. As these technologies continue to advance, the image
files they produce become better, have higher resolution and grow larger and larger in
file-size. Connected devices like fitness monitors and in-room sensors all produce their own
streams of data, all of which must be stored and managed.

The storage demand at even a small medical practice can quickly reach petabyte-size. However the
challenge does not stop there – as the data grows, the time, budget and resources required to
protect and manage this critical patient data grows as well.


Medical Practices need proper data backup and security management solutions that delivers con-
stant data availability. The solution must be reliable and cost effective, also covers Virus
protection covering ransomware and cyberattacks, because healthcare organizations are increasingly
under attack from a growing list of threats.

Data breaches in health care come in a variety of forms. They can include cases in which criminal
hackers steal protected health information to commit medical identity theft, or instances when an
employee views the records of one patient without authorization.

This is partly why healthcare suffered more ransomware attacks than any other industry in 2017,
according to a report from global cybersecurity insurance company Beazley. The report found that 45
per cent of all ransomware attacks in 2017 were aimed at the healthcare sector.


The good news is that the market also offers solutions designed to handle the ever-increasing amounts of
healthcare data securely and cost-effectively, ensuring that quality care is never risked by lack
of access to vital information.


Here are five ways healthcare organizations can also protect themselves against the triple threat of out
of control data costs, system downtime and loss of data integrity:

1: Look for converged primary and secondary storage

To properly deal with explosive data growth, healthcare centers need to integrate primary,
secondary and cloud data-management capabilities which can eliminate storage and data protection
silos while decreasing the risk of any downtime.

2: Benefit from cost-effective, scale-out storage

Small and medium-size healthcare practices with fewer resources and smaller budgets, need scalable
storage that will adapt to their data needs.

3: Protect against data degradation

Medical images, in particular, are highly vulnerable to data degradation. The silent corruption of
data in medical images caused by bit rot is a significant concern. The problem is compounded
because legacy systems store images such as X-rays to a picture archiving and communication system
However, may not detect if data has been compromised. As a result, the information read from the legacy
storage system may be corrupt and unusable. Healthcare organizations also need modern data solutions
that can guard against this kind of data degradation.

4: Inoculate against ransomware
Data protection is also top priority for practices as they battle against the constant threat of
cyberat- tacks. However, modern healthcare practices solve this issue by implementing a storage solution
that protects information continuously and takes data also take snapshots every 90 seconds. Because the
object store is immutable, these snapshots remain completely unaffected in the event of an attack.
As a result, medical practices can recover the most recent version of data, and thus thwart any
ransomware attack.

5. Insist on a tangible ROI
Cyberattacks are increasingly common and as a result, practices are seeking insurance policies that
provide coverage in the event of a data breach or loss.
Dollar value by insurance companies as part of the risk assessment, this can also quickly add up to tens
of mil- lions of dollars in premiums. However, these insurance premiums can be reduced when
practices can also demonstrate they have effective data management and protection strategies in place.
With the right data management solution, healthcare facilities can not only protect their data and
decrease costs, they can also better treat their patients and ultimately save more lives.

For more information, please visit Medical IT Services