Eric Ebner, president and CTO at Protocol 46 presented a great session during our January WebTrack webinar, “Protecting your data from cybercrime”. For those of you who were unable to attend the session, below is a recap of that presentation.
What is cybersecurity?
There are many different definitions depending on how your respond to and identify breaches. However, Ebner started the presentation by stating his favorite – “The state of being protected against criminal or unauthorized use of electronic data, or the measure taken to achieve this.”
Current status of cybercrime in the healthcare industry
Ebner spent a considerable amount of the presentation discussing the rise of cybercrime in the healthcare industry. The scale and intensity of healthcare related cybercrime is a critical and growing threat to the U.S. medical system. The healthcare sector represents a juicy target for cyber criminals because patient information–such as social security number, insurance ID number, credit card number, address and medical history– is a tremendously valuable asset that can be easily used to commit fraud, financial theft, and identity compromise. In addition, medical data has more lasting value than other types of information. A stolen credit card can be cancelled and fraudulent charges disputed, but resolving medical identity theft is not as straightforward. On the black market, medical records sell for 10 to 20 times higher than credit card records.
History of cybercrime and their targets
Our speaker pointed out that for as long as there’s been an Internet, vandals, troublemakers and criminals have sought to exploit it. In the 1960s, curious individuals went on to work with early computer systems where they applied their curiosity and resourcefulness to learning and changing the computer code that was used in early programs. However, in the early 1990s, cyberattacks changed to have a more criminal focus as commercial web began to be more established. Since cyberattacks have grown more frequent and destructive in recent years. One form of hacking — the denial-of-service (DoS) attack — has apparently even become a tool of war. The attacks are designed to paralyze websites, financial networks and other computer systems by flooding them with data from outside computers. Crime and cybercrime will continue to be present in our society, regardless of the best efforts of the criminal justice system. The public and private sector need highly skilled individuals to combat this threat and help prevent these attacks.
Five things to protect against cybersecurity
Ending the discussion, Ebner circled in on five key “musts” to for every organization to do right now to protect again future cyberattacks.
- Take inventory of devices on your organization’s network
- Take inventory of software on those devices
- Secure configuration for computers
- Continuous vulnerability assessment
- Control the use of admin privileges
Eric Ebner’s presentation was an education and entertaining experience. This blog post only scratches the surface of all the insightful facts, case studies and helpful points that Ebner presented on. You can watch this webinar for free to get more in depth on the topics above and learn about an action plan for creating and enforcing good cybersecurity practices.