The rising tide of ransomware may have cost the business world as much as $1 billion in 2016. It's difficult, however, to pin down an actual figure. In fact, the number might be much greater, as so many victims of a cyber attack pay the "ransom" to release their files, without ever reporting such an incident has occurred.
If you don’t have a well-defined disaster recovery plan in place, consider this an intervention! Now is the time to put one in place. A picture archiving and communication systems (PACS) disaster recovery plan secures the sustainability of your practice, as well as your ability to provide care to your patients.
On the other hand, if you already have a documented plan, you should take the time to confirm it covers all the most critical aspects of recovery. (Many organizations often address one aspect of disaster recovery, such as backing up their data, but rarely do they have the necessary comprehensive plan in place for recovering quickly from a disaster.)
By now you are likely familiar with ransomware and have heard horror stories that it is creating for healthcare organizations. If you read our recent blog, Medstar's IT systems were held ransom for $19,000 and Hollywood Presbyterian paid $17,000 to have their data released. Despite these recent events, you might believe these hosptials are unique and it wouldn't happen to me!
Whether it’s Medstar’s IT being held for ransom for $19,000 or Hollywood Presbyterian for $17,000, the FBI has made it clear that no hospital should pay ANY ransom to access their data. Instead, hospitals should invest in backing up their data to make it accessible in these worst-case scenarios.