Discover the top tips to keep your care home safe from cyber security threats
In recent years, the advent of technology has transformed the way in which the health and social care industry has operated to provide outstanding care to residents. But while this trend has seen huge leaps in the standard of care and quality of life for residents, an increase in technology provides new challenges around cyber security threats for care settings to navigate.
It can be understandable for people who work in social care settings to be hesitant to the introduction of technology, such as a digital care planning system or electronic medication management systems because of the cyber security threats. However, there are various cyber security measures that care homes can take to make sure that they are taking full advantage of all the benefits that technological transformation has to offer while avoiding any potential security pitfalls that come along with it.
Even with regards to those potential pitfalls, care providers that are deliberating whether they should invest in digital technology might be thinking that with more technology facilitating and driving their care provision, this automatically means an increase in cyber security threats simply by virtue of having more digital technology involved, but in practice this isn’t the case. While making greater use of digital technology can have challenges of its own, it can also make transformative improvements in areas such as data security, privacy and the handling of personal resident information between different settings.
For example, where paper records can be easily lost or damaged, or even unknowingly shared, utilising the security measures of a digital care planning system means that there are far more precautions in place to ensure that these things do not happen. More still, the inability to efficiently track real-time data as is the case with paper records can pose security risks of its own, unlike a digital care planning system where all data is securely stored and can only be accessed by authorised users.
So in practice, rather than digital records opening care homes up to more security risks than those presented by paper systems, the opposite is true – going digital means data is far safer and regulated.
But that’s not to say that there are not challenges to data and cyber security with digital technology. Indeed, there are cyber security measures that must be taken to ensure data is not mishandled, stolen, or lost.
For example, recently the Cyber Resilience Centre for Wales shared their top tips to ensure that health and social care settings avoid being the victim of ransomware and cyber-attacks.
They advised care settings to:
- Make their networks resilient and practice good cyber hygiene
- Make sure that staff awareness training is up to date – spotting a phishing e-mail early will prevent further disruption and damage down the line
- Make sure that all staff know the symptoms of an ongoing ransomware attack and respond quickly to it by using a prepared incident response plan
- Identify common points of failure across the network – patch vulnerabilities and restrict access from malicious sites and IP addresses.
On first reading, these measures can seem daunting and confusing because as a care provider, you might not even know where to begin thinking about how to avoid a ransomware attack or how to sure up your network resilience, but by investing in a digital partner like Person Centred Software, much of these challenges are handled on your behalf with our peerless attention to detail and commitment to safety when it comes to cyber security and data protection.
Person Centred Software understands the challenges faced by care providers in the ever-evolving industry of health and social care, and we understand that there is no one-size-fits-all solution for cyber security measures.
Whether you are a regional manager, an owner or a carer, there are various cyber security measures in place with Person Centred Software that mean you don’t have to worry about any potential pitfalls of investing in digital technology, such as:
Mobile Device Management
Where you can centrally control your device suit
Which keeps your devices secure with a Care App timeout
With which you can control access rights to data and information on the Care App
IP Address Whitelist
You can restrict access to PCS products to your organisation’s network
Secure Passwords/ Access
In which you can set your organisation policies to enforce only strong passwords
Which protects your residents’ privacy and data
Single sign-on (SSO)
Which means you can securely access multiple applications and services
Did you know?
Person Centred Software is certified with Cyber Essentials Plus, which means that we can guarantee our credentials as trustworthy and secure partners to prevent cyber security threats and data breaches.