How Mature Security Analytics Can Be a Weapon Against Cyberthreats

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How Mature Security Analytics Can Be a Weapon Against Cyberthreats

How Mature Security Analytics Can Be a Weapon Against Cyberthreats

The risk cyberthreats pose to healthcare organizations has never been greater. In 2021, the industry saw an all-time high in the number of data breaches reported (679) and the number of individuals affected (45 million), according to an analysis of U.S. Department of Health and Human Services data.

IBM’s “Cost of a Data Breach Report 2021” indicated that the average breach costs a healthcare organization $9.2 million, more than double the average for other industries. This cost includes detecting the breach, mitigating it and notifying all individuals impacted. The figure also accounts for revenue lost when care cannot be delivered, which is increasingly the case when organizations are hit with ransomware attacks.

The industry’s main challenge in the face of growing cyberthreats is acquiring enough people, skills and technology to address cybersecurity needs. In a competitive job market and with margins tightening, the most effective approach for organizations is to integrate and automate their cybertechnology stack toward what is commonly termed extended detection and response, or XDR, says Bob Kalka, vice president of worldwide security technical sales for IBM.

Proper Management of Security Analytics Tools Is Vital for Healthcare
Security analytics is a prime example. Healthcare organizations have a multitude of tools in place to collect, aggregate and analyze data, monitor security across the enterprise and detect threats. But few of these tools have been optimized to meet healthcare’s unique needs, which include links to a vast ecosystem of vendors and partners, medical devices that monitor patient activity 24/7, and an expanding secure access service edge to support remote care.

“Organizations need to spend the time to tune their security analytics tools correctly. Otherwise, they’ll get a lot of false positives,” Kalka says. The effect is similar to the alert fatigue felt by users of electronic health record systems. “After a while, you stop paying attention — and that’s when a breach is likely to occur.”

Kalka describes the process of tuning security analytics as adding a combination of wisdom and horsepower. Wisdom comes from working with industry partners and technology solutions that have the experience and expertise to meet healthcare’s needs.

Horsepower, on the other hand, is making the most of the tools that are already in place. “The answer isn’t to buy another engine, but to get more from the engine you have,” Kalka says. “You can accomplish that with technology accelerators such as automation and artificial intelligence.”

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