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Healthcare Must Tighten Up Cybersecurity Practices


Health systems should take a bottom up approach to better address cybersecurity issues.

With the healthcare sector at an increased risk for cyberattacks, you would think that healthcare executives and health systems would start strengthening their defenses.

However, cybersecurity strategies and plans have only just started gaining traction around the industry.

Practices do not necessarily have the tools in place to thwart off threats from hackers and many do not train their employees on cybersecurity best practices.

Jothi Dugar, chief information security officer at NIH Center for Information Technology, told Inside Digital Health™ at World Health Care Congress, that many health systems are not doing enough to discover the reason for cyberattacks and cybersecurity issues.

Dugar gave an example: Imagine someone goes to the doctor with a headache and the doctor just gives the patient Tylenol or prescribes a medication to help the headache go away, without finding out the cause of the headache in the first place.

She said that that happens often in cybersecurity. If there is a data breach or software needs to be fixed, a tool can just be put in to fix it. But the tool does not actually fix the problem, and the root of the issue is still unclear.

Dugar said that we need to take a more holistic approach to cybersecurity and that we need to address cybersecurity from the bottom to top in order to see change.

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