Patient data breaches in the BYOD and BYOC era

Health information is becoming increasingly vulnerable to data breaches as hospital employees turn up for work with mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets and use consumer friendly and easy-to-use cloud storage services.

This proliferation of mobile devices in the workplace and hooking-up onto cloud storage services is among the factors most likely to cause a data breach at hospitals in the US(worldwide phenomenon, I must add), as indicated by 31 percent of healthcare organisation respondents from the 2012 HIMSS Analytics Report: Security of Patient Data*.

Bringing you own device and using cloud storage services has led to the new digital lifestyle era at the workplace, and two new acronyms, BYOD(Bring Your Own Device) and BYOC(Bring Your Own Cloud)!

You know your own devices well, so what then is this cloud storage service?


Now that the graphic would have given to those others who prefer inspiration, but maybe “just an introduction” to the tech savvy, I think it was enough to arouse leaders in workplaces that manage patient data to think on the possiblities of anyone who could use such free and easy cloud services for criminal uses, thus beware it’s highly probable that mobiles devices and the cloud could be used to breach health information security at any HIM/MR Department.

In a future blog or blogs, I shall take you further to discuss some best practices for hospital data security.

*The 2012 HIMSS Analytics Report: Security of Patient Data, the third installment of the bi-annual survey of healthcare providers nationwide, shows a steady rise in data breaches over the last six years, despite increasingly stringent regulatory activity surrounding reporting and auditing procedures, and heightened levels of compliance –  a report as commissioned by the information security practice of Kroll Advisory Solutions

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