Buckle Up, It’s Going to be a Wild Cyber Ride!

Breathing a sigh of relief that the WannaCry ransomware attack didn’t hit your organization?  Thinking you’ve dodged that bullet?  Well, think again!  If trends are any indication, and they typically are, I think it’s going to get a lot bumpier.  Below are some incidents that lead me to to this conclusion.  So, buckle up and hold on tight! January 2015 – Largest Single Healthcare Breach - Anthem Insurance breach affecting over 80 million people.  Investigations point to state sponsored cybe ...

Overwhelmed by HIPAA? Compliance is a Process, Not an Event

Like most major change initiatives, HIPAA compliance doesn’t happen in a day. It requires change by every person in the organization. Everyone who touches PHI (protected health information) must develop new work habits to keep PHI secure…Staff who answer phones, schedule appointments, and check patients in have to maintain patient confidentiality in very public work stations…IT staff must implement new technical safeguards and continually monitor systems…Managers must learn the new roles of P ...

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 ...

Leadership Briefing on Cyber Security

You're invited!  McLane Intelligent Solutions is hosting a Business Owner Briefing on Cyber Security breakfast in Temple, Texas on Friday, May 12, 2017 at 7:30 AM.  There is plenty of news about cyber breaches, but what small and medium businesses may not realize is that they are targeted more and are usually less prepared to deal with a cyber threat or breach. McLane would like to share their insight with you on the 12th. Specifically: How to properly protect your business from external threats ...

Celebrating Nurses – Cornerstones of the “Human Firewall”

In their roles as both care giver and care coordinator, nurses generate, transmit, transcribe, and interact with enormous amounts of information using a dizzying array of devices. Not surprisingly, nurses play a critical role in keeping patients’ protected health information (PHI) safe. Nurses, you are amazing!!  In the course of a single hospital shift, a hospital nurse may interact with a single patient’s record 10-20 times – or more – depending on the intensity of the care and length o ...

Missing the Target of HIPAA – Part 3

If you haven't read my previous two blogs on this topic I encourage you to do so.  The first blog stresses the importance of being risk management proficient over being a HIPAA “expert”. The second blog deals with being accountable in your work actions, which means not only are you responsible for your actions, but your actions can be independently verified.  These two “factors” can go a long way to protecting your organization from the risks of a breach and from substantial penalties and fine ...

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 ...

Cybersecurity: Have you hardened your systems?

We perform HIPAA Risk Assessments (Security Risk Analysis) for very small practices to large healthcare organizations, plus business associates that include software, big data, and marketing companies.  We know the focus of the assessment needs to be security; therefore, we run an industry standard (NIST based) scan checking computers for HIPAA compliance.  (NIST stands for National Institute of Standards and Technology) Our findings show that the average covered entity is about 15% compliant and the ...

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