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Ransomware in Healthcare…Still?

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By now, after years of ransomware in the news, one would think that the problem would begin to ebb, given nearly every security vendors’ claims to prevent it. Obviously this has not proven true, particularly in healthcare.

Verizon’s 2017 Data Breach Investigations Report states that ransomware accounts for 72% of malware incidents in the industry. Why is this so? 

The majority of today’s healthcare-targeted attacks, such as ransomware, are motivated by financial gain rather than simple notoriety. Cybercriminals will always target those organizations with the weakest defenses and the most valuable data. Few industries are as dependent on data and information than healthcare; without patient records, a hospital cannot operate. 

Hospitals pose a relatively easy target due to the high number of network ingress and egress points, which translate into attack vectors. Workers routinely access critical information from multiple, often unsecured, devices or networks, which renders a perimeter-based security architecture irrelevant. 

Compounding the issue, medical institutions often lack adequate security resources because of tight budgets. As a result, many hospitals fail to deploy protections required to keep them safe from attacks. In essence, they are playing a perpetual game of catch-up. A new approach for security in healthcare is needed. 

The answer to eliminating malware, such as ransomware, is isolation, which implements a secure and trustworthy execution environment (or isolation platform) between the user and potential sources of attack. By executing sessions away from the endpoint and delivering only safely rendered information to devices, users are protected from malware and phishing attacks. In the isolation model, malware has no path to reach an endpoint and legitimate content needn’t be blocked in the interest of security. With a native user experience, administrators can open up more of the Internet to their users while simultaneously eliminating the risk of attacks. 

If you are visiting the National Health Information Sharing and Analysis (NH-ISAC) conference May 8 - 10 in Orlando Florida, please visit Menlo Security’s booth #3 to learn how isolation can help healthcare organizations finally put an end to the ransomware problem.   

Tags: malware, isolation, ransomware, anti-phishing, phishing prevention, healthcare

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