Privileged Account Management helps healthcare company to mitigate insider threat and comply with HIPPA 

Global Scenario

According to the healthcare-focused results of the 2015 Vormetric Insider Threat Report (ITR), a full 62% of respondents identified privileged users—those who have access to all resources available from systems they manage—as the most dangerous type of insider. Partners with internal access and contractors ranked second and third, respectively.

The report pointed out that healthcare data has become highly desirable to bad actors, healthcare records selling for tens to hundreds of dollars. That’s much more valuable than credit-card information: US credit card records sell for 50 cents or less. The enormous detail available in patient records is the reason for this, making it possible for criminals to not only apply for credit cards or loans, but to generate large sums from fraudulent medical charges, or even to compromise a patient’s existing financial accounts.

In this position many healthcare industries are constantly faced with rising requirements to meet their security risks and combat constant attacks on their It security structure.

Challenge

The delivery of health care services—primary care to secondary and tertiary levels of care—is the most visible part of any health care system, both to users and the general public. There are many ways of providing health care in the modern world. The place of delivery may be in the home, the community, the workplace, or in health facilities. The most common way is face-to-face delivery, where care provider and patient see each other 'in the flesh'. This is what occurs in general medicine in most countries. However, with modern telecommunications technology, in absentia health care is becoming more common. This could be when practitioner and patient communicate over the phone, video conferencing, the internet, email, text messages, or any other form of non-face-to-face communication.

Improving access, coverage and quality of health services depends on the ways services are organized and managed, and on the incentives influencing providers and users. Healthcare administrators are individuals or groups of people who act as the central point of control within hospitals. These individuals may be previous or current clinicians, or individuals with other backgrounds. There are two types of administrators, generalists and specialists. Generalists are individuals who are responsible for managing or helping to manage an entire facility. Specialists are individuals who are responsible for the efficient operations of a specific department such as policy analysis, finance, accounting, budgeting, human resources, or marketing.

These administrators often have direct access to confidential patient information which is stored in their data centers. Healthcare administrators have a dedicated technology support team to manage these data centers and IT for managing the healthcare core infrastructure. Leveraging technology for increasing growth has become a key agenda for healthcare industry over the years. With this new rules and regulations regarding patients confidential data have been enacted by various governments HIPPA is a key example of such rules.

In the recent years Healthcare industry has come under constant cyber-attacks specifically targeting patient’s confidential data. Also with cases of privileged users stealing sensitive data have become widely known healthcare industry has become more vulnerable to breaches than ever before. Our team of consultants assessed such issues with a series of discussions with system administrators, patients, healthcare admins and IT steering committee members of healthcare industries. Based on the responses we realized that the number of privileged users managing patients confidential data will double in the next 10 years as healthcare continues to achieves higher connectivity and virtualization to increase growth thus increasing insider threat from disgruntled employees.

Opportunity

ARCON PAM Solution, which is a multi-tier, lifecycle solution for securing and managing passwords, providing a granular access controls on critical commands and end to end monitoring of all activities associated with privileged accounts.

The Solution

The initial phase of the project entailed rollout of Access Control Settings considering shared environment of the data center. This enabled approval for every access to sensitive data, improved productivity and access based on service tickets. Maintaining the log for each access request was an added silver line to this solution. This feature allowed ensuring accountability and access on need-to-know basis for data center, application and technology support teams.

Second phase of the project rollout focused on the creation of enterprise level Password Vault which will enable healthcare company to enforce an enterprise password policy across their most critical IT systems. ARCON PAM helps to establish a central management console for flexible operations of all actions associated with password management from requests to resets.

The Solution design provided better authentication and audit capabilities. ARCON PAM helps the healthcare company to store and monitors critical audit trails of all privileged actions for audit, compliance and forensic purpose. ARCON PAM manages to provide highest satisfaction to Risk managers with mechanism for log review for critical sessions either as DVR like recording or as commands and further collaborative integration with SIEM solution provided a real-time alert mechanism.

The Key to successful implementation was a series of pre- implementation workshops that educated users on the technology’s capabilities while allowing participants to play a role in defining the scope of the project.

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