Cyber Security: Is it Really a Matter of Life or Death?

A webinar brought to you by the National Rural Health Association and Rural Hospital Insurance of America If you are the CEO, CFO or COO of a Rural Hospital then this webinar is for YOU! But, it is open to all healthcare management. On February 21, from 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm join the Rural Hospital Insurance of America (RHIA) program manager in conversation with two of America's leading experts in cyber threat protection, prevention, detection, and response to learn how to stay ahead of the growing and evo ...

Shortage of Qualified Cybersecurity Workers: “…the greatest cyber risk of all.”

The 2017 Global Information Security Workforce Study (GISWS) released in February 2017 forecast a shortage of 1.8 million cybersecurity workers by 2020, while a study by Cybersecurity Ventures estimates “3.5 million unfilled cybersecurity jobs” by 2021. While the projected magnitude of the shortfall varies from one study to the next, government experts, consultants, and pundits alike are unanimous in predicting that the current shortage of qualified cybersecurity workers will only get worse for the ...

Thank Goodness! NIST says, “No more difficult passwords!”

Just when you thought all hope was lost of remembering your 16 character password with upper and lower case letters, numbers, and special characters; NIST comes to the rescue. That's right!  The National Institute of Standards and Technology wrote a brief addendum to SP 800-53 which simplifies Strength of Memorized Secrets.  You and I refer to those "secrets" as passwords.  It's a light read, only 50 or 60 pages.  I don't really know because I didn't want to print it and kill four trees.  Anyway, the ...

World War III via Pacemakers

We're all smart enough to know the U.S. and the American way of life is under continuous threat by terrorist and underdog countries.  What we probably don't think about is ways those countries are fighting us on a regular basis.  It's not with bullets and bombs; it's with cyber crimes!  They have already stolen Federal employee information, including those employees' health records.  Foreign governments have incriminating evidence on many of these people's private lives. Do you remember the Allison ...

Healthy Skepticism – Your Best Cyber Defense

It's no longer news that most of us are uber-connected. We use phone apps for weather, meditation, mapping, games, travel, texting, and more.  Online management of home devices, including thermostats, coffee makers, and alarm systems make it possible for us to remotely control many aspects of our lives. These technologies offer previously unthinkable convenience – and a great deal of risk to their owner's physical and information security. Healthcare, too, is becoming more connected for all the s ...

MACRA/HIPAA: Ignorance of the Law Is No Excuse

  Many physicians believe HIPAA is a total waste of their time and money.  That's because they think it's the federal government trying to force them to do something that they don't need to be doing.  But, that's not the intent of the HITECH and OMNIBUS rulings.  Much of the compliance that was put into place was because of the implementation of EMR/EHR systems in the healthcare industry.  The federal government's Meaningful Use program even paid covered entities to transition from paper to ...

Best Defense Against Ransomware is a Good Backup

By now, most have heard or been affected by the WannaCry ransomware that has spread to over 150 countries at last count. The WannaCry ransomware started taking over users' files on Friday, demanding $300 to restore access. Hundreds of thousands of computers have been affected so far. Computer giant Microsoft said the attack should serve as a wake-up call. The first line of defense in this is always having a properly maintained firewall both on your network and on each individual computer system. Ho ...

HHS OCR: PHI Security is your top priority

If you haven't noticed, cybersecurity is a major issue in the world, politically, economically, and even personally.  No one wants their identity stolen.  No business wants to deal with customer (patient) retaliation caused from losing their personal health information, whether it's boycotting, bad press, negative social media or a class action lawsuit. In general the U.S. government is taking action to help protect small businesses by requesting a new standard cybersecurity guide be written by the Nat ...

Security Alert: Google Email Attack

Google is investigating a large-scale phishing attack involving malware that is currently spreading among users of its Gmail service. You will see a message similar to the one below! The message sent to Gmail users includes an invitation to view a shared Google Docs document. However the link leads to a self-propagating internet worm. DO NOT CLICK IT! Users are asked to log into their Google accounts by the malware, which doesn't ask for a password and appears to bypass two-factor authenticatio ...

Lack of Awareness – Still a Barrier to Cybersecurity Effectiveness

A recent study conducted by HIMSS Analytics and reported in the HIPAA Journal indicated that more than 78% of the IT executives, managers, and staff surveyed identified employees’ lack of security awareness as a primary concern – despite 85% of the same survey respondents claiming to have an educational program in place designed to create awareness! Clearly a one-time – or even annual – training program isn’t enough. So how can healthcare executives improve information security awareness withou ...

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