Tips for dealing with computer security
Five threats to your data security
As a doctor of optometry, you are responsible for your patients’ health and the safety of their personal information. Although hacking is commonly associated with data breaches, there are many other outside threats to cyber security that are less familiar. Here are five external threats to be aware of:
Malware is the parent name for many different kinds of malicious software, including spyware, viruses, ransomware and others. New types of malware are created daily.
Ransomware is a type of malware that blocks access to a computer system until a significant sum of money, or “ransom,” is paid.
Phishing occurs when a hacker fraudulently presents themselves as a legitimate entity, typically through email, with the intent of gaining confidential information.
- Spear Phishing
Attackers can target an individual by gathering information about who their target typically interacts with and falsely impersonating a familiar company or colleague.
- Vendor negligence
Any party that has access to your network can provide a gateway into the system— from payroll technology to electronic medical records and beyond.
Cyber liability insurance can help protect your patients and your practice from the impact of a data breach. For more information about the cyber liability insurance available to AOA members through AOAExcel, please visit AOAcyber.com
Here is some information from HHS about ransomware and HIPAA that might be helpful for prevention. Basically, practices should understand that ransomware is a risk, and that their HIPAA compliance duties include security risks assessments. Taking some steps to prevent or mitigate the risk or potential damage might help a practice recover from these attacks, which are growing in frequency.