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Data security in healthcare
March 7, 2023

Data security in healthcare: Why it’s important and how to improve it

The term ‘data security’ refers to protecting digital information (data) from unauthorised access, corruption, deletion or theft throughout its entire lifecycle. In today’s digital world, where company, consumer, and personal data all have a price, data is worth its weight in gold. As such, it should come as no surprise that data security is fundamental for many industries, not just the healthcare sector.

There are several types of data security, many of which are used in healthcare cybersecurity. In this article, we will explain the importance of Data security in healthcare, explaining how to ensure safeguarding processes and how to protect against a data breach. Lastly, we will also highlight how Vizlib helps healthcare organisations enhance data security measures.

The importance of data security in healthcare

As highlighted above, data security is an incredibly important concept in practically every industry, especially those that handle Big Data. However, with the amount of sensitive data that healthcare organisations process, data security is essential.

Effective data security in healthcare protects patients and streamlines organisational processes

Healthcare practices, like GP surgeries and hospitals, are gold mines for sensitive data. Patient records (which were historically recorded on paper) are now electronic-based and reside on either a cloud-enabled service or a series of local computer systems, servers, and storage devices. As such, while this is great news from both an administrative and sustainability perspective, it leaves sensitive patient information at risk of being exposed by malicious actors in a data breach.

Data breaches in the healthcare sector can lead to severe identity theft, as patients will often have their full address, name, and date of birth stored on their patient record. In addition, depending on the country (and whether the healthcare provider is private or publicly funded), the patient’s file might also contain payment information, which can also lead to fraud.

Along with compromising patient information and health data, data security is also essential in the healthcare sector to ensure that data analysis can be conducted correctly. Similar to other industries such as retail, finance and manufacturing, the healthcare industry also uses data analysis to conduct reviews of their operations, improve efficiency and streamline procedures. 

How Vizlib prioritises data security without compromising on insights

At Vizlib, we understand that measuring, managing, and analysing healthcare data is no small feat. As such, our low-code intuitive products make it easier than ever to get healthcare insights. 

Data security is vital to ensuring that the insights that data researchers and decision-makers access are genuine and reliable. As such, a data breach can erode confidence in digital transformations and can cause providers to be sceptical of the data being presented to them. In addition, suspected compromised data sets cannot be used when conducting data analysis, as it’s impossible to verify the integrity of the information.

How to ensure data security in healthcare?

To guarantee data security and reduce cyber threat risks, healthcare organisations must ensure that IT security standards are maintained and that all staff follow any data protection procedures.

Below we have provided three essential best practices that healthcare organisations must follow to safeguard patient data and other healthcare data:

1. Promote data literacy

Improving the data literacy of your healthcare organisation can help employees better understand the importance of data privacy, data collection, and personal data. In addition, improving data literacy will help your staff to become more vigilant of security standards and learn how to prevent data from falling into the wrong hands. 

2. Identify and control access to sensitive data

To help improve data security and compliance with data protection legislation, it’s important first to identify sensitive data and, secondly, to limit who has access to said information.  

According to research, insider threats account for over 60% of all attacks. Therefore, limiting access to specific files can prevent insider threats and protect patient data and other sensitive information from falling into the wrong hands. 

3. Use data encryption & backups

Encrypting data is an absolutely critical security procedure to prevent unauthorised persons from accessing your data. A good practice is to ensure that data is encrypted at rest and in transit, as this will protect your data even in the event of a data breach or theft. 

Backups go hand-in-hand with encryption and are also an essential part of data security as they act as a failsafe should your data go missing or be compromised by an insider attack.

How does Vizlib help to ensure data security?

VIzlib is a push-only service which means that besides a license check, Vizlib does not look at any stored data, nor does it transfer any data outside of the user’s site. Furthermore, as well as being a global leader in advanced data analytics and visualizations solutions, we are also ISO 27001 accredited, meaning that we have the appropriate policies and controls to secure your data.

At Vizlib, we also use an attribute-based access control system that allows users to restrict who can view and use certain Vizlib extensions. Lastly, for enterprise users who want an on-premise solution, our Vizlib server platform allows you to create security rules and various user permissions.

How to get started with Vizlib

Using Vizlib in your healthcare organisation can help you to supercharge your data analytics approach. Our solutions allow you to create powerful and eye-catching interactive dashboards that make your data talk. 

With no coding skills required, Vizlib is the perfect tool for data analysts, marketers, and other key decision-makers. Our user-friendly platform makes it an essential tool to boost data adoption throughout your organisation. 

Empower your team to craft truly intuitive, guided analytics solutions tailored to the right audience. No learning curve means clinicians and support staff can explore and understand data at a glance, leading to better Clinical Intelligence, improved patient outcomes, resource management.

So what are you waiting for? Sign up for a free demo now & see how Vizlib can help turn your healthcare brand into a data champion.

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