GlobalData’s latest report, "Cybersecurity in Healthcare," shows that cybersecurity presents a major risk to healthcare data. The healthcare industry remains a prime target for malicious cyber groups looking to cause discord and make unethical gains. With the number of attacks rising, the associated costs are also increasing, and the current multi-industry shift to digitize workflows and promote remote working due to the COVID-19 pandemic is also helping cybersecurity emerge as a critical technology across the healthcare industry.
Rodrigo Noble, a senior digital analyst at GlobalData, commented: “The prioritization of, and associated rising demand for, cybersecurity technology can only be good for the market, which is expected to reach $237.7 billion by 2030 growing at a strong compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.4 percent from 2019, when the market was worth $120.3 billion. Before the onset of the pandemic, the healthcare industry was already undergoing a digital transformation, and the current multi-industry shift to digitize workflows and promote remote working due to the COVID-19 pandemic has expedited the cybersecurity timeline, helping cybersecurity emerge as a critical technology across the healthcare industry.”
The majority of patient interactions within the healthcare system involve the use of medical equipment and devices, most of which are connected to a network. These connected devices generate, analyze and transmit medical-grade data, which create a medical internet of things (IoT) within healthcare networks. The growth of connectivity brings not only increased operational efficiencies, but also an ever-expanding attack surface for cyber terrorists.
Noble continued: “Connected devices are becoming a key part of healthcare infrastructure. The average hospital room has anywhere from 15 to 20 network-connected devices. The challenge of keeping networks safe is compounded by legacy systems that lack basic cybersecurity measures, as well as medical devices connecting to networks without proper vetting - both of which plague hospitals worldwide. In security terms, capabilities are fragmented and decentralized, generating substantial control challenges. Replacing legacy software across the enterprise can be cost-prohibitive, especially considering the disruption this would cause to daily routines, but cyberattacks can have far-reaching reputational and often financial ramifications.”