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Healthcare CISOs Must Understand Source of Threats to Combat Cyber Attacks

by Peter Jacobs

According to this year’s CrowdStrike Threat Report, Healthcare CISOs must comes to grips with the source of threats to successfully combat cyberattacks. Theft of healthcare records and ransomware attacks against hospitals and healthcare organizations are on an upward trajectory. In fact, since the start of 2019, nearly 1 million individuals have been impacted by a breach or other cyber activity; for the same time period in 2018, the number was less than half of that, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Even Healthcare.gov was impacted in October of 2018, with the breach of approximately 75,000 individuals’ files.

The impacts to patient trust along with the loss of sensitive personal data have put a spotlight on precariousness of the situation. Legacy systems are still in use, as are devices that store medical data locally. As the number of endpoints into the systems multiplies, so do the risks, especially since the platforms—laptops, desktops, mobile and IoT devices—used to access the systems likely have wildly varying levels of security.

One crucial factor in preparing a cyber-defense strategy: information.

Knowing Your Adversary Can Give You a Critical Advantage

Accurate details on global trends, analysis of real-world events, and details on most-used threat vectors can give you the insights to better fortify your enterprise. The 2019 CrowdStrike® Global Threat Report is designed to do just that, but providing analysis, statistics, and case studies, along with recommendations on how to better protect your data resources and your people.

The Report looks at data gathered by CrowdStrike’s incident response, intelligence gathering and threat hunting teams to provide a comprehensive view of the cyber-risk landscape, including the tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) used by attackers worldwide. Key metrics include “breakout time,” a measure of the speed with which an intrusion spreads throughout an enterprise. Of note, state actors’ attacks are shown to spread significantly more quickly than those of eCrime organizations.

Also, in the report: where threats originate, such as nation-states that target both internal dissidents and foreign countries for both political and economic gain; the growing sophistication and cooperative strategies of cyber-criminals; and the continuing growth of ransomware attacks, where technology makes it easier to target vulnerable organizations for potentially huge payoffs.

Knowing what kinds of TTPs are prevalent—and the “how, when, and who” behind those attacks — are crucial to helping CISOs decide where to focus resources. To download a copy of the 2019 CrowdStrike® Global Threat Report, click here.

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