A Guide to Healthcare Penetration Testing

In recent times, several healthcare organizations have fallen prey to hacking and data theft, despite having security measures in check. However, one way healthcare organizations can protect their patient information and network is to carry out penetration testing, which is an ethical way to attempt a break-in into their security system just like a hacker would.

This testing will help to achieve compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act and put an end to security breaches and attacks.

What Is Penetration Testing?

A penetration test is carried out by analysts to identify the potential vulnerabilities and weaknesses in security systems. These tests are carried out using both automated scans and manual testing. The tests will cover all areas of your applications, networks, and patients’ portals using several hacker tools. Any vulnerability found will be reported so that they can be improved upon to prevent hacking from dangerous people.

What Does Penetration Testing Entail?

To carry out penetration testing, you will need to avail the tester of the information and credentials necessary to access your system. They will carry out the test either in the capacity of a manager, administrator, or front desk role and see how much information people with lower access can get compared to those with higher access.

Penetration testing should contain everything, including critical systems that can affect the security of patient data. They include IDs, firewalls, and authentication servers.

Here’s Why You Should Get Healthcare Penetration Testing

The first and most obvious reason to get penetration testing is for your organization’s protection. Your IT strength and environment will determine whether or not it is easy to launch attacks on your security system. So, you need to check for weaknesses in your server interface, software OS, and web browser defects.

Due to the multiple network environments, it is imperative to run independent penetrating tests to find out weaknesses that exist in all network areas and correct them before an attack occurs.

Healthcare penetration testing should be done often within your organization. However, there are several considerations to be made. First, you need to establish whether or not a major change has occurred, such as the installment and usage of new hardware or a new method of handling patient data.

With every major change, it becomes imperative to carry out formal penetration testing to find out if any new vulnerabilities or weaknesses might exist following the change. Other than that, it is safe to perform healthcare penetration tests every year following major network changes.

Final Thoughts

Penetration tests are very necessary for your organization and must be carried out following a major network change. However, it is up to you to decide the kind of penetration testing your organization needs, as well as who to work with, whether your internal security team or experts outside your organization, said from Blue Goat Cyber.

Pay attention to the penetration test reports because they carry a lot of details. They should tell you what testing methodologies and attack methods were used. You will also find out what vulnerabilities were discovered, as well as suggestions on how to improve your security and fixed all vulnerabilities, one at a time.