In Part 1 of this series (see previous article) we looked at why certain industries are more popular targets for hackers. Previously we focused on why the manufacturing and energy industries are targeted by ransomware due to the sensitive nature of their business processes.
However, ransoming a business isn’t the only way that hackers can hurt them. Another common reason that companies are hacked is to gain access to sensitive data. This could be personal identifying information or payment information.
More than 66% of businesses do not last more than a year after a successful data breach. It’s important to know if your business is one vulnerable to data breaches, and what to do to prevent them. Here we’ll be looking at two industries heavily targeted by hackers seeking to illegally access protected data. These industries are medical and financial.
The medical field has often been the target of hackers due to the amount of information these businesses are required to have on hand. From billing information to personal information, medical records are a wealth of data that hackers may seek to misuse.
According to a report published by IBM in 2019, the average data breach cost companies roughly $300 per record. Medical records can cost up to $450 per record breach, including the cost of recovery, cost to business, potential fines, and so on. The average breach in the medical industry can cost over $6 million per breach.
How do breaches in the medical industry happen? The most common breaches are accomplished through targeting individual employees or networks. It is therefore of paramount importance that businesses in the medical industry train their staff in measures that will protect data, and that these businesses conduct network monitoring.
HIPAA details essential security measures that medical companies and any third party businesses they work with must adhere to in order to protect the data they deal with. Failure to comply with HIPAA standards can not only result in data breaches, but in legal problems as well.
Financial Service Industry
Like the medical industry, financial service companies must maintain large databases in order to do business. Due to this, they are often targeted by hackers as well.
The potential points of failure in the financial service industry are often unsecured communication and third party software.
Similar to what was discussed as a weak point for the manufacturing industry, use of unsecured third party software, and in the case of the financial service industry, unsecured web apps, can lead to security issues. Experiencing a data breach as a result of a breach through third party software is becoming increasingly common.
Unsecured communication is another common issue. Since businesses in the financial service industry must communicate often with many clients, secure methods may be put by the wayside for ease of business. However, this can end up being a costly mistake when data breaches occur.
Importance of Cybersecurity
Data breaches can ruin businesses. The cost of the breach plus the loss of trust from customer bases lead to severe consequences.
It may seem like a pain to ensure that your business is HIPAA compliant, that your network is constantly monitored for irregularities, and that third party software is vetted to ensure its adherence to security policies. However, failing to do so will cost you more in the long run. Data breaches are all too common for businesses of every size and every industry.
Contact the cybersecurity experts at tekRESCUE to learn what steps you need to take to keep your business safe.