By John Pulley March 5, 2012
The time and money spent protecting personal health information from data breaches are well worth the investment, contends a new industry security report.
The 67-page report, “The Financial Impact of Breached Protected Health Information: A Business Case for Enhanced PHI Security,” includes a five-step method that health care organizations can use to assess security risks and build a case for improving security. The report, released Monday, was prepared by the nonprofit American National Standards Institute with the Shared Assessments Program and the Internet Security Alliance.
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The five steps are:
- Conduct an assessment determining the risks, vulnerabilities and applicable safeguards for each PHI home, or place in the IT system where personal health information rests.
- Determine a security readiness score for each PHI home based on the likelihood of a data breach.
- For each unacceptable security readiness score, examine the likelihood of a particular cost factor being applicable and apply a relevance factor.
- Use the formula “relevance x consequence = impact,” with impact representing the adjusted cost.
- Add the adjusted costs to determine the total adjusted cost of a data breach.
The report is available for free download at the ANSI website. Registration is required.