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Healthcare Fraud

Survey: 38% of hackers said they could find the healthcare data they sought in less than an hour


(MedCityNews) – While many cybersecurity reports examine the issue from the perspective of IT experts. But a new survey from software company Nuix looked at it from another view: that of the hacker.

And the results are pretty terrifying: 38 percent of surveyed hackers said they could find the healthcare data they sought in less than one hour.

The respondents also saw hospitals and healthcare providers as particularly soft targets. The sports and entertainment, retail and hospitality industries also seem to be easy prey.

“Organizations that plan their security controls … do so with one critical person missing from the table,” Chris Pogue, Nuix’s head of services, security and partner integration, said in a phone interview. “Who’s not at the table? The attacker.”

A total of 112 hackers participated in the survey. Respondents completed a survey anonymously online using Survey Monkey or in person during the Black Hat, Bsides Vegas and DEFCON hacker conferences. Individuals who wanted to retain complete anonymity could fill out a paper survey and turn it in at a Nuix event.

Pogue said he wasn’t surprised at the healthcare-related results.

For one, numerous hospitals have weak security. Plus, the general mindset of the industry, he said, is to help people — not focus on cybersecurity.

“There’s a lack of understanding of what data they have and the value of that data,” Pogue said. “But doctors and hospital administrators need to understand that data has tremendous value on the black market.”

And that’s just the theft side of it. It doesn’t include tactics like ransomware, which often scare hospitals into simply paying the ransom.

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