Small Healthcare Organizations Can Shut Down From Cyber Attack Permanently: Why Compliance with HICP Is Key To Survival

There over 6,000 hospitals and over 20,000 other healthcare organizations in the United States, and majority are small organizations who are now increasingly falling victim to cyberattack.

This is because patient health information is highly sensitive and valuable on the Dark Web, and the criminals know a small organization will very likely have a weak defense and the impact will be even more severe.

In fact, a small healthcare organization will be more likely to pay a ransom payment when becoming the victim of a ransomware attack due to the impact, but it may not even be able to survive.

This is what happened recently to a small healthcare provider, St. Margaret’s Health in Spring Valley, Illinois. It suffered a ransomware attack and the impact was so severe over 14 weeks, adversely impacting patient care and halting ability to submit claims to insurers for months, creating a significant financial loss that it decided to shut down operations permanently.

Here are a few key facts impacting the Health Industry:

  • On average 58 cyberattacks monthly
  • On average $9.23 million is cost of a data breach
  • Already in 2023 over 71 million patients sensitive medical information has been breached
  • Each medical record can fetch $1000 on the Dark Web
  • Ransom payments demanded are frequently over $1M

Data breaches and ransomware have become an epidemic at healthcare organizations. Attackers are easily exploiting weak or missing cybersecurity controls to make intrusion into the network, stealing sensitive patient data, installing ransomware and demanding a ransom payment.

Recently, the Tri-City Medical Center in Oceanside, CA experienced a cyber attack, forcing them  to declare “an internal disaster” and divert ambulances to other area hospitals. FOX 5 interviewed CyberCatch CEO, Sai Huda, to weigh in on the damage these kinds of attacks can have on healthcare systems. Watch the interview.

Beyond damaging patient trust, an attack like this can easily cause life-threatening interruptions to patient care. Small healthcare organizations are especially vulnerable.

This is why the HHS, with the support of DHS and CISA, issued the new Health Industry Cybersecurity Practices (HICP) to prescribe cybersecurity controls for all healthcare organizations to implement in order to mitigate cyber risk. By implementing HICP compliance measures, small healthcare organizations can avoid becoming a victim of a ransomware attack, and protect patient data from theft and breaches.

For small organizations (1 -10 physicians or 1-50 beds hospital), 22 cybersecurity controls should be implemented at a minimum to operate safely.

HICP compliance includes implementing robust cybersecurity measures such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and encryption techniques. These measures help to safeguard patient information from external threats and prevent data breaches.

Compliance with HICP is essential for small healthcare organizations to maintain patient trust and reputation. Patients want to feel confident that their personal health information is being protected and handled responsibly by healthcare providers.

On the other hand, non-compliance with HICP can lead to breaches and data leaks, damaging the trust and reputation of small healthcare organizations. Patients may become reluctant to share their personal information or seek medical services from organizations with a history of non-compliance.

HICP compliance does not need to be costly, stressful or complicated. With CyberCatch, you can attain full compliance in 2 weeks or less and stay safe continuously.

CyberCatch’s innovative Healthcare Compliance Manager solution enables all healthcare organizations to cost-effectively comply with the HICP.

CyberCatch’s solution comprises of:

  • Workflow engine for compliance risk assessment
  • All prescribed controls organized by domains
  • Compliance tips
  • AI-advisor for detailed guidance and to answer any questions
  • Policy and procedure templates
  • Charts, reports and evidence repository

With CyberCatch, you can quickly complete the compliance assessment accurately and document attainment of compliance and attain cyber safety.

Check out a quick DEMO.

Cyber safety is patient safety.

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