The Case for a Cybersecurity Framework

By Bayardo Alvarez, director, Information Technology, Boston PainCare Center; HIMSS member and part of the HIMSS Global Conference & Exhibition Success Stories initiative

The HIMSS Global Conference & Exhibition doesn’t end when the convention center doors close. Attendees leave with knowledge from educational sessions, speakers and networking that can be applied to the real world, creating an ongoing, year-round experience. HIMSS asked attendees to share the personal and professional successes that stemmed from attending conference – from challenges faced to changes made. Read on to learn about the value of attending HIMSS19 from the unique perspective of our members and partners.

Challenges in Cybersecurity

It should come as no surprise that healthcare has seen a sharp rise in cyberattacks over the past few years. Criminals launch phishing campaigns to steal information and credentials, spread malware, and lock computers and data in exchange for ransom. Software tools and botnets are becoming readily available for anyone to rent and perpetrate attacks, requiring very little skill or infrastructure to cause havoc.

In addition to external threats, healthcare organizations face many other threats that can be damaging to patient safety, the business and the information they are responsible for protecting. Disgruntled employees, overly curious staff, negligent vendors and hardware failures can pose as much of a risk as a determined cybercriminal.

Protecting assets against these different threats becomes a tall order for any organization. They must not only implement safeguards and controls to reduce risks and mitigate the impact of a breach, but also prepare in advance to respond and recover efficiently when a breach does occur.

Growing Pains

So, what can healthcare organizations do to enhance their cybersecurity posture? Where can they find reliable, proven and universal guidance to secure their data and IT systems? How do they address security in new and emerging technologies? These were some of the questions we asked ourselves at Boston PainCare Center. 

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