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Potential Cost of Data Breaches of Protected Health Information Could Reach USD 5.6 Billion Annually

By Medimaging International staff writers
Posted on 13 Jan 2015
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The healthcare industry and institutions face an ever-increasing threat of data breaches to clinical and patient information.

Cybercriminals are attracted to Protected Health Information (PHI) such as Social Security Numbers (SSN) on Medicare cards, and other sensitive medical information stored online on an institutions' network, or in the cloud. Many healthcare institutions, such as doctor’s clinics, do not have the resources to secure such information adequately.

Healthcare data breaches are expected to surge with increased adoption of Electronic Medical Records (EMRs), and wearable healthcare technologies. The annual cost of data breaches is also increasing and healthcare institutions will need to invest much more in data security to protect their credibility as an institution toward all their stakeholders.

According to the Reuters news agency (New York, USA), the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI; Washington DC, USA) has issued a private notice to the healthcare industry, warning healthcare providers to better secure their data. The notice states “The healthcare industry is not as resilient to cyber-intrusions compared to financial and retail sectors, therefore the possibilities of increased cyber-intrusions is likely.”

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