For years, companies in a wide variety of fields have known about data security threats, but may not do as much to protect themselves as they could. But with the threats related to data security becoming a little more clear for people in all fields, many businesses are now starting to behave a little more proactively in this regard. That’s a good thing, because the potential damage done by a data breach can be massive, and costly.
One industry that hackers now target with greater frequency is health care, according to a report from Health Care Informatics. This should come as no real surprise, because companies in the field control a lot of sensitive information on their patients or business partners, such as financial data, personally identifying details, and even medical histories, all of which can be used for identity theft with relative ease if it falls into the wrong hands.
More concerns for health care
In addition, though, the health care industry has recently been beset by a new type of data breach: ransomware, the report said. With this specific type of program, which would be downloaded inadvertently to a care provider’s systems, hackers gain control of sensitive data and say they will release it only if the targeted firm complies with ransom demands (usually tens of thousands of dollars or more). Moreover, when these breaches happen, they can be protracted, trying, costly affairs.
“If you will pay once, why not see if you’ll continue to pay?” data security expert Mac McMillan told the site. “Hence the problem with paying ransoms. Let’s not also forget that this attack was not like before. The attacker here did not encrypt the data, they simply stole it, and then offered it back for ransom. The problem here is that the attacker did actually have access to the data.”
Other types of business
Another type of firm that could be targeted for data breaches these days is a tax accountancy, according to Accounting Web. These companies, too, handle plenty of sensitive information on consumers and businesses, and the IRS is now warning companies about the dangers accountants face when handling so much data, and what they can do to better protect those details both now and in the future.
Regardless of industry, though, when it comes to protecting private information, it’s a good idea for businesses to brush up on industry-recommended best practices, and train employees in the best methods for handling this type of data on a regular basis.
The more companies in any sector can do to ensure that they’re properly protecting their sensitive information, the better off they and their customers or clients will be in the future. That kind of extra security measure could include things like investment in colocation solutions through a data center platform provided by a dedicated information security company. The kind of IT infrastructure these companies can provide significantly outstrips what most businesses in any other field can build for themselves.