Securing Patient Data: Best Cybersecurity Practices in Custom Healthcare Software Development

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By Afshi

The Healthcare sector is a data-intensive industry. Custom healthcare software development services further adopt digital disruption trends and move sensitive data to the cloud platform. However, these technological advancements increase the risk of cybersecurity threats like data breaches. 

Cyber attackers often hack healthcare sites to access sensitive patient information and healthcare data. This may cause severe financial or reputational damage. Therefore, This issue requires the utmost attention in terms of safety and security. 

Meanwhile, the healthcare cybersecurity industry is expecting a growth of 58 billion USD by 2030. However, this shows how cybersecurity practices are becoming more crucial with time. 

Thus, this blog aims to highlight the cybersecurity practices in custom healthcare software development services. Furthermore, we will learn how these measures help to secure sensitive patient data. 

Let’s dive deeper into it. 

Understanding Cybersecurity Importance in Custom Healthcare Software Development

Healthcare cybersecurity practices are the area of information technology that helps protect sensitive healthcare data. With time, the healthcare sector has transformed digitally to manage and process digital patient records, which results in rising cyber threats. 

Beyond financial losses, it’s about the trust between healthcare service providers and patient groups. Further, such cyber attacks may lead to long-term reputation damage to the organization. 

Thus, it means more than safeguarding healthcare data. Cybersecurity practices are the solutions ensuring valuable healthcare delivery. 

There are different types of security threats affecting custom healthcare software development. They are:

  • Data breaches
  • Malware attacks
  • Phishing
  • IoT attacks
  • Attacking network vulnerabilities
  • and, Cybercriminals

Besides, there are certain factors affecting healthcare cybersecurity practices.

  • Adopting electronic health records (EHR)
  • Issues in cloud and mobile technologies
  • Moreover, poor medical software application development
  • Lack of knowledge and expertise in custom healthcare software development companies
  • Further, adaptability issues with technological advancements
  • Vulnerable technologies and networks

Best Practices for Cybersecurity in Custom Healthcare Software Development 

1. Patient and Healthcare Data Encryption

Adopting encryption technology is crucial in protecting healthcare and patient records. Further, this technology transforms readable data into codes. In order to decrypt these codes, one must use the appropriate encryption keywords. 

This technology restricts deciphering sensitive codes if it detects any unauthorized access. Moreover, custom software development companies adopt this technology to limit unverified access. 

Following is the way it works.

  • In the healthcare sector, encryption technology helps secure patient data both at rest and in transit. Further, this ensures the codes are unreadable and secure, even after any interception.
  • Moreover, a custom healthcare software development company helps adopt RSA (Rivest-Shamir-Adleman) and AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) to protect patient-side data.
  • This AES and RSA are compliant with security standards.
  • Furthermore, patient data encryption adds an additional layer of protection.

2. Adopting Multi-Factor Authentication

Custom healthcare software development companies must set strong passwords to individual sites and applications. Further, this may reflect as a first line of defense when protecting patient data. 

Multi-factor authentication, or MFA, adds a layer of protection, enabling techniques like unique codes or fingerprints. Let’s find out how they add value to patient data protection in the healthcare sector.

  • MFA can secure remote access to healthcare software applications, EHR, or patient portals.
  • Further, this technology adds additional authentication factors even after attackers decode login credentials.
  • Even if legacy systems support MFA when it comes to patient data safety.
  • This technology also protects telehealth services developed by custom healthcare software development companies.

3. Conducting Security Audits

Software development companies in the USA often conduct security audits to ensure the system is risk-free. Moreover, security audits encompass areas like healthcare infrastructure, user practice, and software. 

This strategy further enables security diagnostics on the physical configuration of custom healthcare software development services. Let’s check how this measure helps protect patient data.

  • Security audits can identify risks in the system of custom healthcare software development.
  • Further, this may help in addressing vulnerabilities present in the healthcare system.
  • These audits help detect whether patient care systems adopt the latest technologies.
  • Thus, this practice is all about detecting and patching cybersecurity issues in healthcare software.
  • Besides, security audits ensure the healthcare system complies with internal security standards and external regulations.

4. Single sign-on (SSO) for Connected Custom Healthcare Software Development Services

A software product development company adopts an SSO solution as a user authentication system. By implementing SSO, verified users can access multiple medical devices and apps using a single set of login credentials. 

For instance, OneLogin, Okta, and Duo are different SSO solutions, adding an extra layer of security. This further helps control the overall login procedure. Thus, it is a solution to improve the cybersecurity for healthcare software or applications. 

Following are the ways an SSO solution enhances patient data protection within a healthcare system.

  • SSO sets authentication procedures for connected medical applications, enabling validation and strong authentication.
  • Moreover, it improves trust and communication between healthcare applications and an SSO service provider.
  • This process helps identify the user details and restricts unauthorized access.
  • Further, it protects patient data using authorization protocols like OAuth 2.0. This process allows healthcare apps to access user data via APIs without knowing the password.

5. Defining infringement and backup plans

Healthcare data breaches are common incidents causing severe damage to this industry and people. Therefore, custom healthcare software development firms should prepare for any infringement and backup plans. 

However, backup strategies like transferring crucial medical data into a secured location ensure data protection. Let’s find out how these strategies provide patient data protection.

  • Preparing for infringement involves access control to the sensitive data. Meanwhile, this restricts data leakage.
  • Custom healthcare software development services should integrate two or three backup storage for healthcare organizations.
  • Further, risk assessment is another significant security requirement to check the vulnerability.
  • Backup plans store private data and restrict illegal access without compromising confidentiality and integrity.

6. Ongoing Training

A software product development company should design applications like ongoing cybersecurity training. On the other hand, application developers require training for more secure and protected custom healthcare software development. 

Besides, training helps healthcare providers learn how to detect phishing emails or malicious sites. Let’s check how this strategy is beneficial to protect sensitive medical and patient information.

  • Ongoing training helps healthcare providers to set an incident response plan.
  • Custom healthcare software development designs apps providing training sessions for security incidents, resulting in patient data protection.
  • Further, this process conducts risk detection, elimination, and recovery plans.
  • Ongoing training sessions cover areas like best practices to protect patient data by assessing suspicious activities. 

Standards and Compliances

Software development companies in the USA often rely on various standards and regulatory frameworks to restrict cyber threats. However, custom healthcare software development firms follow some specific standards to protect patient data. These are,

  • HIPAA: This standard follows three primary rules: security, privacy, and breach notification. Moreover, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act aims to protect sensitive healthcare information.
  • NIST: It’s a framework that enables data protection at an organizational level. Further, custom healthcare software development firms can implement this regulation to protect patient data.
  • ISO/IEC 27001: This standard follows a code of practice for information security management. ISO 27001 ensures patient data protection by identifying and mitigating cyber threats.
  • Center for Internet Security (CIS): This standard enables Critical Security Controls to protect sensitive patient data from cyber attacks. 

Conclusion

In the healthcare industry, patient records are the most sensitive data cyber criminals target to attack. However, custom healthcare software development services come up with solutions compiled to security standards and regulations. Developers design medical applications in a way that can restrict unauthorized users from accessing critical information. It’s a significant step towards eliminating risks of financial and reputation loss.

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