Bitglass Report: Healthcare Record Breaches Hit Four-Year Low

Number of Breach Incidents Declined Slightly, but no Mega-Breaches Were Reported

Campbell, California, UNITED STATES

CAMPBELL, Calif., March 01, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Bitglass, the Next-Gen CASB company, today announced that in 2017 the number of individuals affected by breaches within the healthcare sector reached a four-year low. The majority of breaches were due to hacking and IT incidents (71 percent); that percentage has continued to grow since 2014. These findings and more are contained in Bitglass’ 2018 Healthcare Breach Report.

The fourth annual Healthcare Breach Report aggregates data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Wall of Shame – a database of breach disclosures that is required as part of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) – to identify the most common causes of data leakage. Bitglass explored the changes in breach frequency as well as the preventive steps organizations have taken to limit the impact of each breach from 2014 to 2017.

Among the key report findings:

  • The number of hacking and IT Incidents has increased, but organizations have done a better job mitigating damage, with 16,060 records compromised per breach on average in 2017.
  • The number of breached healthcare records decreased by 72 percent between 2015 and 2017 and by 95 percent since 2016 (excluding mega-breaches at Anthem and Premera).
  • The number of data breaches in 2017 dropped slightly to 294, down from 328 in 2016, indicating that healthcare remains a target for hackers, though many are shifting focus to other high-value targets.
  • From 2014 to 2017, healthcare organizations reduced the number of breach incidents attributed to lost and stolen devices by 63 percent.

"Mega-breaches like Anthem and Premera Blue Cross, along with device loss and theft, caused healthcare breaches to spike in 2015 and 2016," said Mike Schuricht, vice president of product management at Bitglass. "Since then, organizations in the health sector have made great strides in mitigating threats to protected health information (PHI),  thus greatly reducing the total number of individuals affected by healthcare data breaches in 2017."

Breach Costs Hit Yet Another Record High
According to data from the Ponemon Institute, the cost per leaked record in the healthcare sector has once again risen, from $369 in 2016 to $380 in 2017. For an organization subject to a large-scale IT incident, that increase can represent hundreds of millions of dollars in costs for identity-theft protection, IT forensics and government fines. Given the significant value of healthcare data – Social Security numbers, treatment records, credit information and other sensitive personal information – the cost of a breach to a hospital or healthcare system can be destructive.

Find details on how CASBs can help you achieve compliance and protect against cloud data breaches in the full 2018 Healthcare Breach report.

To view the complete Bitglass 2018 Healthcare Breach Report:

About Bitglass

Bitglass, the Next-Gen CASB company, is based in Silicon Valley with offices worldwide. The company's cloud security solutions deliver zero-day, agentless, data and threat protection for any app, any device, anywhere. Bitglass is backed by Tier 1 investors and was founded in 2013 by a team of industry veterans with a proven track record of innovation and execution.

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