Hackers immensely interested in Health App Data

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The year 2020 witnessed hackers showing a lot of interest in mobile apps related to health and wellness. And estimates are in that over 1 million people’s data was compromised by many data breach attempts at various healthcare organizations.

A report compiled by Health and Human Services (HHS) says that cyber crooks targeted hospitals and health service providers the most during the COVID-19 pandemic last year, to steal diagnosis and research details along with patient records from Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems.

Security researchers from Approov also tried to mimic the skills of hackers and accessed over 4 million patient and clinical records from over 25,000 providers, where half of the data was sold on the dark web or used to extort money from the victims.

Health Information such as demographics, lab results, medications, procedures, allergies and other data was severely affected says Elissa Knight, a Cybersecurity Expert from Approov.

Most apps are exhibiting vulnerabilities and that was found in an analysis using the Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources Standard.

No serious hacking tools were used to access the data from the health apps as just some basic skills helped in pulling out the info and that’s serious added Ms. Knight.

Here the problem is not at the end of EHR housed at hospitals as they are well protected. But as soon as the patient gives permission to health apps to access the records stored in EHR, the app programs start keeping a track of the developments before and after the access- leaving a long trail for hackers.

So, all you out there using health apps to keep a track of your health changes, you better be aware that a slight neglect can push them into deep cyber trouble.

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security