In recent times, the healthcare sector has been one of the most affected by cybersecurity attacks, underscoring the urgent need for robust security measures. These breaches not only jeopardise sensitive patient data but also pose a threat to the integrity of healthcare systems and patient care.

Our team was present at the Digital Health Festival, which served as a platform to explore cybersecurity challenges and here are the key takeaways:

The Human Element: Engaging Employees in Cybersecurity

A recurring theme echoed by several speakers was the challenge of engaging employees in cybersecurity efforts. Despite the growing awareness of cyber threats, many individuals within organisations fail to recognise their role in safeguarding against these risks. The reluctance to prioritise cybersecurity training or view it as an additional burden hampers efforts to foster a culture of security awareness.

Speakers emphasised the pivotal role of individual accountability in fortifying cybersecurity defences. Simple measures such as using secure passwords and implementing multi-factor authentication (MFA) were highlighted as essential steps towards bolstering overall security posture. The consensus was clear: security begins with each individual in their personal lives, and their actions have far-reaching implications for organisational resilience.

Building Resilience: A Proactive Approach

Cyber resilience is a fundamental obligation for all organisations and not optional. As cyberattacks become inevitable, organisations must shift their mindset from “if” to “when” an attack will occur and prioritise cybersecurity as a business risk. This proactive approach involves integrating cybersecurity considerations from the start, such as during the product development phase, and implementing robust resilience strategies to mitigate the impact of cyber threats. It’s paramount that organisations raise and discuss questions like who has access to their data, what relationships they have with their third parties, and who can access their cloud.

Safeguarding Patient Data: A Non-Negotiable Priority

At the core of cybersecurity efforts lies the protection of patient data. Healthcare organisations are entrusted with sensitive information, and any compromise in data security poses significant risks to patient trust and safety. Red-teaming exercises, aimed at identifying vulnerabilities before attackers exploit them, are essential measures to ensure the integrity of patient records. The process of restoring data is incredibly tricky and time-consuming, underscoring the need for efficient data management practices. Board members and management were encouraged to view cybersecurity discussions through the lens of business risk, aligning with their primary concerns.

Leveraging AI to Detect Threats

AI plays a crucial role in detecting and mitigating cyber threats. By leveraging AI capabilities, organisations can detect threats before they reach patients and staff and enhance their overall security posture. However, it’s essential to acknowledge that AI alone cannot block every threat, especially those targeted at individuals through sophisticated phishing techniques. Many hackers are using AI to craft phishing emails to bypass hospital systems. It’s important to have a SecOps (security operations) team to help with reducing these threats by leveraging AI capabilities. Often, companies don’t have the expertise in-house to deal with these threats, so it’s important to reach out to the right people who can help protect their organisations.

At Wavelink, we understand the unique challenges facing the healthcare industry, especially concerning cybersecurity. As a distributor of cutting-edge solutions, we empower our partners to address these challenges head-on. By aligning with leading vendors and providing market expertise, we equip resellers with the tools and knowledge needed to make a difference in healthcare security. Together, we’re committed to building a more resilient and secure future for healthcare organisations and their patients.