Top cloud challenges for healthcare businesses

With lives and patient wellbeing potentially on the line, the healthcare industry has typically been cautious about new technology. Since the start of the Covid-19, pandemic, however, global healthcare providers have shown that they are more than ready to innovate quickly. 

According to a recent Trend Micro report, 88% of global healthcare organisations have accelerated their cloud adoption since the pandemic began. 47% of those said adoption has increased “considerably”, while 40% of healthcare IT leaders noted plans to make more applications cloud-native.

Unfortunately, though most would agree that this migration is positive, healthcare businesses face significant challenges when moving to cloud-based environments. One aspect that is especially difficult to solve is a shortage of skills. 43% of providers surveyed by Trend Micro said that skills gaps are a key challenge in migration to cloud security solutions. This and other inefficiencies have led to more capital expenses, with 43% spending more on contracted services and 39% on operational and training costs.

More concerning yet are the challenges the healthcare industry faces when it comes to vulnerability. Though the vast majority believe they are in control of their cloud security environment, far fewer are confident they understand their role in the shared cloud responsibility model. Many also admit to challenges protecting cloud workloads, particularly when it comes to policy management, patch management, and cloud misconfigurations.

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A route forward? While a lot of IT leaders already have plans to address these issues, further digital transformation using the cloud is one path forward. By further utilising cloud-based security tools, healthcare businesses can quickly improve security while reducing costs.

Ransomware is a security threat many healthcare providers will be familiar with. The WannaCry attack on the NHS in 2017 garnered global attention and cost it £92 million. However, while that variant has faded, other strains still pose a daily threat. The high value of patient records makes healthcare businesses a lucrative target for attackers.

Cyber backup solutions

Cyber backup solutions can help significantly with such threats. As well as reliable backup and recovery services, some solutions now integrate cybersecurity, data protection, and simple security management tools.

AI-based behavioural detection can also be very beneficial when it comes to zero-day attacks, catching and preventing them without the need for manual intervention. These tools can be fully integrated with the provider’s backup solutions, using backup data to improve detection rates, automatically recovering corrupt or locked data, and ensuring backup files are clean.

For healthcare providers, the ability to lean on these automated tools can prove invaluable. As well as reducing the total cost of ownership, they free up your IT team to focus on more active security and patch management, aided by a single, intuitive interface. 

Microsoft 365

Another big name in cloud-based security is Microsoft. In healthcare, Microsoft 365 can both empower clinicians to be more productive and improve security and compliance. Through tight integrations with Windows 10 Enterprise and Office 365, it looks to protect all aspects of a business. 

Healthcare providers can, for example, get a real-time overview of their compliance posture and use of AI to help them meet HIPAA/HITRUST standards. Meanwhile, Microsoft 365’s Advanced Threat Protection combats malicious emails, integrates AI-driven cloud app security, and automatically detects advanced endpoint threats.

If you’d like to explore Microsoft 365 and other solutions to protect your cloud IT environment, please get in touch. We can help you identify the right solutions for your organisation, and deploy and manage them in a cost-efficient way.

How do you protect against phishing attacks?

86% of UK businesses experienced a phishing attack in 2020, and they’re only getting more sophisticated. To protect your business, you need to strengthen your domain security, starve attackers of information, and adopt a culture of caution.

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