The insider threat to healthcare data

The healthcare industry faces numerous challenges to data security. Insider threats are one key area of concern. If the employees are not well-trained to handle the technology that stores the data, the sensitive information can be compromised easily.


An ICIT report published in 2017 throws light on the issue. As per the report, 31.5 percent of all the 2014 cybersecurity incidents were caused by malicious insiders. 23.5 percent generated from non-malicious insider threat activity. A seemingly harmful careless attitude can also lead to compromising of the data security.

The insider threats are mainly three types. Careless or uninformed users who unintentionally violate security requirements, negligent users who intentionally evade security measure and the malicious users.

In 2016, the personal information of 200,000 children leaked from Chinese hospitals. Hackers, as well as cooperative insiders, were found to be behind the leak. The data was quickly sold after being stolen.

A study released in 2016 dwells deeper into the insider threats. Of the surveyed C-level security executives and IT professionals, half of them admitted to critical concern over data theft from insiders. 69 percent of them reported to have experience and attempted or successful theft of data by insiders.

Therefore, apart from securing the network, it is equally important to monitor the resources working in the firm. Rolling out security programmes that make them well aware of cybersecurity and foundational cyber hygiene is the need of the hour.

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