Labs Must Audit Their Cybersecurity Measures

October 19, 2022 Ben Denkers

During 2022, five labs reported data breaches; two cases involved more than 300,000 patients

CEO SUMMARY: While clinical laboratory managers and pathologists are aware of the risks of a data breach, they often assume that related protection measures are working as needed. That is a mistake. With the cost of healthcare data breaches on the rise, it is vitally important for labs and hospitals to ensure that their defenses are operating properly. 

SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE YEAR, the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Civil Rights has posted five lab data breaches. Each affected more than 500 lab customers, and two of them impacted more than 300,000 patients each. Those numbers alone should capture the attention of laboratory managers and pathologists.

All five of the breaches involved a network intrusion, according to the government. But it is likely they all started with missteps by an employee within the lab, said Ben Denkers, Chief Innovation Officer at CynergisTek, a cybersecurity firm based in Austin, Texas.

“The way that computer network environments work today, users are acknowledged as the weakest link and offer the most potential for access to a hacker,” Denkers told The Dark Report. 

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About the Author

Ben Denkers

Ben Denkers is the CIO at CynergisTek where he is responsible for supporting growth, ensuring effective and efficient service delivery, and achieving the highest levels of client and employee satisfaction for CynergisTek’s security, privacy and compliance services. Denkers has nearly 20 years of experience in information security and consulting that includes markets such as finance, automotive, energy, manufacturing, and healthcare. With the threat landscape changing daily, this breadth of experience provides a unique perspective to the industry specific risks organizations face. He has been recognized for building, training, and optimizing team productivity. His strong focus on providing the operating framework, training, and development, and decisive leadership has empowered his teams to achieve tremendous success and drive business growth.

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