Federal regulators are seeking public input about how they should consider the "recognized" security practices of organizations when taking potential HIPAA enforcement actions - and how to distribute a percentage of HIPAA fines to individuals harmed by violations.
The number of major health data breaches posted to the federal tally so far in 2022 - and the total number of individuals affected by those breaches - has surged in recent weeks as reports of large hacking incidents continue to flow in to regulators.
A public health department and a medical specialty practice are among the latest entities reporting major hacking incidents affecting tens of thousands of individuals' sensitive health information. Some experts say the breaches follow disturbing, evolving cyber trends.
The pandemic has raised the ante significantly for the attack surface and the level of insider threats facing healthcare sector entities, according to Dave Bailey, vice president of security services, and attorney Andrew Mahler, vice president of privacy and compliance, of consultancy CynergisTek.
Despite the drumbeat that began about a decade ago for healthcare entities to bolster their identity and access management, it is still an "incredibly weak" area for many, Lee Kim of HIMSS says. She discusses the effects of cyberattack trends and the Ukraine-Russia War on healthcare organizations.
Gaps in federal regulations concerning the security and privacy of health data falling outside HIPAA's umbrella are getting filled to some extent by various state laws. But that's creating additional challenges, says privacy attorney Kirk Nahra of the law firm WilmerHale.
A consolidated legal case that includes allegations of embezzlement, trade secret theft and intimidation offers an inside look at a complicated and messy alleged insider breach reported last year by a Texas-based accountable care organization.
Many healthcare entities are resistant to implement multifactor authentication, and that is among the most frustrating critical security mistakes that organizations in that sector make, says Tom Walsh, founder of security consultancy tw-Security.
Why do so many HIPAA -covered entities and their vendors do such a poor job managing security risk and safeguarding patient's protected health information? Many critical factors come into play, say Roger Severino, ex- director of HHS OCR, and Bob Chaput, founder of security consultancy Clearwater.
Chronic disease management firm Omada Health has been changing its approach to cloud intrusion prevention and detection, which is reducing time spent on investigating false positives, says the company's information security leader, Bill Dougherty.
A flurry of hacking incidents and other recent breach developments highlight the cyberthreats and risks facing fertility healthcare and other related specialty providers that handle sensitive patient information.
A federal law signed earlier this year amending the HITECH Act could help incentivize many healthcare sector entities to bolster their cybersecurity programs, says federal adviser Erik Decker, CISO of Intermountain Health, who suggest other incentives, as well.
The Department of Health and Human Services has named Lisa J. Pino - a former Department of Homeland Security official charged with mitigating the massive 2015 cyberattack on Office of Personnel Management - as the new director of its HIPAA enforcement agency.
The acquisition of the SAFE Identity consortium and its trust framework by DirectTrust, best known for creating and maintaining trust frameworks for secure email messaging in healthcare, will help facilitate new secure health information exchange use cases, says DirectTrust CEO Scott Stuewe.
Effectively managing the cybersecurity of thousands of medical devices takes a highly collaborative approach and "delicate balance" between IT security leaders, biomedical staff and others, say Baptist Health Care's CISO, Thad Philips, and the senior manager of the biomedical program, Tony Williams.