As medical and dental practices combat the impact of COVID-19 on their patient’s and practices, the threats of ransomware attacks and data breaches continue to escalate.
Recently, it’s been reported that researchers have identified more than 2,000 suspect Coronavirus related domain names, leading to a wide variety of malicious software file types. Ransomware is a type of malware that prevents you from accessing your computer. Essentially, your computer becomes locked. This is especially concerning as healthcare providers struggle to treat patients during the pandemic, even with network access. In addition, HIPAA Rules restrict the ability for healthcare providers to treat patients without access to patient data.
According to Bloomberg Cybersecurity, “As the coronavirus spreads around the globe, hackers are leveraging the panic and confusion to transmit malware and break into computer networks, according to research from several cybersecurity firms.”
PCIHIPAA’s OfficeSafe™ Cyber-Security and Compliance Program includes: offsite data backup and restoration services; cyber – breach insurance, provided by a third party; incident response management to help respond to a ransomware attack or a data breach; and online employee training to help educate staff. The Company is offering its services for free to all new clients for 90 days during the pandemic.
Jeff Broudy, CEO of PCIHIPAA states, “PCIHIPAA is joining the #FightCOVID19 pledge by offering free resources to dentists and doctors across the United States. Even without a pandemic, ransomware attacks and data breaches occur daily. With COVID-19, the breach risk curve is steep. PCIHIPAA is spreading “Good Karma” by offering free services and resources to the healthcare industry.”
Hospitals and large provider networks, typically have allocated resources for adequate cyber-security and compliance initiatives. However, private practices run like small businesses and often rely heavily on office managers and independent IT firms to manage their offices. In addition, with COVID-19 States and Cities are now requiring “non-essential treatment” to be performed at home. Work from home (WFH) employees and remote technologies create additional vulnerabilities for healthcare providers. Although the Office for Civil Rights is exercising its enforcement discretion relating to telehealth technologies, and empowering healthcare providers to treat patients wherever they are, many practices still face challenges understanding and abiding to other HIPAA Rules.
“We’ve created a COVID-19 resource center for all healthcare providers during the pandemic.” Broudy adds. “Every practice needs cyber – insurance. We are also providing risk assessments, network scans, online courses with continuing education credits, and other resources to help you through these times. Good Karma!”
To learn more go to www.pcihipaa.com/aaoms