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Survey: 81% of healthcare organizations compromised by cyber-attacks in past 2 years

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When asked about readiness in the face of a cyber-attack, 66% of execs at health plans said they were prepared, while only 53% of providers said they were ready.  Larger organizations, in terms of revenue, are better prepared than smaller ones.

Malware, software designed to disrupt or gain access to private computer systems, is the most frequently reported line of attack during the past 12 to 24 months, according to 65% of survey respondents.  Botnet attacks, where computers are hijacked to issue spam or attack other systems, and "internal" attack vectors, such as employees compromising security, were cited by 26% of respondents.

According to the survey, the areas with the greatest vulnerabilities within an organization include external attackers (65%), sharing data with third parties (48%), employee breaches (35%), wireless computing (35%) and inadequate firewalls (27%).

The survey found that spending to prevent cyber-attacks has increased at most institutions, but it has to be on the right initiatives and fit the organization's strategy, said KPMG's Bell.  "There are no cookie cutter approaches to security," offers Bell.  "An organization with a mobile workforce may have a far different technology need from an organization that processes healthcare claims, for example."  

 

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