Ransomware attacks have become a common threat for hospitals and physician practices throughout the United States and Texas. Ransomware can completely disable a practice by encrypting the patient data, essentially making it inaccessible until the ransom is paid. There are things you can do to protect your practice.
[NEW - June 20, 2016 - 14 U.S. agencies issue guidance on how to protect your networks from ransomware.]
Here are some tips TMA suggests you follow to protect your practice from ransomware and other malware:
- Back up your computer system on a regular basis to an external drive or a backup service.
- Set up your email accounts to deny emails sent with executable files (.exe file extensions).
- Patch or update your software regularly.
- Enable automatic software updates whenever possible.
- Make sure your computer systems are protected by a reputable anti-malware software.
- Protect your system with a software firewall to help detect threats.
- Train your employees on avoiding potential malware threats, such as SPAM. TMA Practice Consulting offers HIPAA training for your practice. For information, call (800) 523-8776.
If you are the victim of a cyber crime, report it to the FBI.
The Texas Medical Liability Trust (TMLT) includes comprehensive cyber liability coverage in all of its policies. TMLT also offers customized services to help large groups, small offices, and individual physicians arm themselves against online threats. Learn more about TMLT's cyber liability coverage.
For more information on cyber security, contact TMA's health information technology helpline at (800) 880-5750 or by email. Also, check the TMA Education Center for continuing medical education courses on related topics.
Action, June 15, 2016
Updated June 27, 2016
Last Updated On
December 07, 2016