The COVID-19 pandemic proved that one of the biggest elements that mankind needs to collectively focus on is healthcare. It was only because of the vast advancements and innovations in healthcare technology that we made in the past, that countries across the globe were able to save billions of lives. Technology was a core pillar of the rapid strides that we achieved in healthcare innovation. Even during the pandemic, technology helped the sector to bounce back on its feet faster when it was struck without notice in the early days of 2020.
From enabling smarter diagnosis, better caseload management, more efficient research on the virus, faster vaccine development, and a streamlined medical supply chain, the contribution of technology is impossible to ignore.
Gartner forecasts that the global healthcare IT spends will grow by 6.8% to hit a size of nearly USD 140 billion in 2021.
However, as healthcare technology becomes a core asset, it inadvertently draws attention from cybercriminals and fraudsters. The COVID-19 pandemic was an opportunity they saw to exploit as any signal of hope against the virus and its induced suffering. In fact, in March of 2020, when the pandemic was its brutal strength, the number of email scams related to COVID-19 witnessed nearly a 667% surge. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. Studies show that there are nearly 5 Billion results in an online search query related to COVID-19 but the most alarming news is that nine out of ten or 90% of all COVID-19 related domains on the internet are scam-prone.
As for healthcare providers and businesses operating out of the healthcare industry, one of the most enticing challenges they are facing today is the rise of ransomware. In simple terms, ransomware is a form of malware that affects computers and enterprise applications. It works by locking out the respective host computer or application and does not allow the access to be reinstated till a ransom demanded by the criminals is paid out by the victim organization.
For healthcare providers, ransomware becomes a key element of concern in their quest to increase their digital adoption. Their top 3 biggest worries related to ransomware are:
However, should such fear elements prevent healthcare organizations from adopting technology in their operations? The answer certainly is no. In the digital era, cybersecurity is of prime importance and today, organizations have numerous solutions to thwart off security threats and ensure that they deliver a secure customer experience across all digital channels. Healthcare fits into this agenda as well.
Here are some of the best practices that healthcare organizations can follow to ensure a safe progression of digital transformation within their operational landscape:
Ransomware and other cyber threats will continue to evolve and try to find new ways to infiltrate enterprise systems within a healthcare organization. However, rather than fearing their imminent entry, healthcare organizations can prepare their digital landscape to proactively monitor and obstruct such activity from ever happening. Striking the right balance between good people, great technology, and knowledge about the threat landscape can easily help in mitigating any challenges posed by dangerous elements.