Due to the critical nature of hospital management and the potential for massive disruption, hospitals are appealing targets for hackers. Poor cyber hygieneis a critical factor in the success of these attacks. Generally, clinical cyber hygiene relates to an organization’s ability to regularly identify, assess, and manage cybersecurity threats. In essence, it explains how organizations safeguard their clinical networks’ privacy and integrity by employing a variety of mechanisms. This article will explain how to make your clinic more secure from cyber-attacks.
Steps to Follow
We’ve seen healthcare providers use the following four best practices.
- Profile all the clinical network devices
Do you keep up-to-date, comprehensive records on every device connected to your network? In this case, how can you keep them safe? Healthcare organizations must be able to identify all devices on their networks and have a digital fingerprint of each one, including the manufacturer, model, OS, hardware, app versions, location, network status, security posture, and usage patterns. This digital fingerprint must include all of the above. Maintaining a complete and accurate database of all networked assets is critical as new devices are add. If any security flaws are found, it will be much easier to find and fix them.
- Provide a multi-factor risk score to each device
Risk scoring is an ever-evolving process for organizations to identify their most vulnerable assets or devices on the network. Risk scores aren’t just based on the likelihood of a breach, but they must also consider the potential consequences for patient safety and clinical processes. The risk score for a compromised device that could lead to the leakage of sensitive patient data would be much higher than the risk score for two devices with roughly the same risk of compromise. Cyber-hygiene-aware organizations constantly reassess and adjust their risk scores.
- Approach risk management in a systematic and cross-functional manner
A single weak link in your risk management strategy can wreak havoc on all of your hard work. There is a significant hole left when a risk management program doesn’t take clinical partners into account but covers all internal healthcare facilities and devices. The ability to track progress and identify issues is impossible without a standard benchmark, so establishing one upfront is essential for measuring progress and identifying problems. Medical devices are increasingly mobile and fragmented, so risk management needs to be applied to all operations. “
- Use device monitoring data
Ongoing device monitoring allows healthcare professionals to recognize security flaws in different devices and establish patterns. Those in charge of procuring medical devices can use this information to make more informed decisions about which devices to buy and how to secure them, thus reducing the overall risk of compromise.
Nothing in life comes for free, as the adage goes. Improved cyber hygiene takes time and effort, but it is well worth it. Patient safety is more at risk than ever before due to healthcare providers’ actions (or inaction), a prime target for threat actors.