Thursday, March 30, 2017

WEDI white paper offers tips on reducing health IT risks

PARCA eNews – March 20, 2017 – The Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI), announced the development of an industry white paper, entitled The Rampant Growth of Cybercrime in Healthcare.”

The paper explores common vulnerabilities that are typically exploited by cybercriminals in today’s healthcare environment, as well as best practices organizations can implement to mitigate these vulnerabilities.

WEDI is a nonprofit organization focused on the use of health IT to create efficiencies in healthcare information exchange and is an advisor to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

The premise of the paper is that, as the use of health IT becomes more widespread, cybersecurity must be more directly integrated into the fabric of healthcare and ultimately become an organizational asset that is perceived as commonplace and mission-critical as hygiene and patient safety procedures have become to quality care. 

The white paper follows up on topics discussed at a series of multi-stakeholder cybersecurity roundtables convened in November 2015 and April 2016 by WEDI and sponsored by Fortinet.

The 15-page document outlines how cybercrimes are more commonplace in the healthcare landscape given the high value of digital health records. Consequently, these records have attracted organized crime and government-sponsored entities that in turn are capable of launching sophisticated attacks to disrupt, disable, destroy or maliciously control digital technology and data of health organizations.

In light of the cybersecurity challenges the roundtable participants identified the following best practices for mitigation to the industry, as explored in the white paper:
  1. Drive a cultural change in how cybersecurity is approached in healthcare, beginning with raising awareness to educate stakeholders around the risk and cost of cyberattacks;
  2. Build the business case for cybersecurity and move it into the executive suite;
  3. Develop cybersecurity frameworks that provide a robust, forward-facing roadmap to protect organizations in a changing environment; and
  4. Apply lessons learned from other industries.
To view the white paper click here.

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