Healthcare IT at risk from security-agnostic GenMobile workforce

Aruba study shows over a third of the medical workers regularly share their passwords

Tags: Aruba NetworksUnited Arab Emirates
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Healthcare IT at risk from security-agnostic GenMobile workforce Chacko says steps need to be made to ensure that advancement does not come at the cost of security.
By  David Ndichu Published  January 4, 2016

Healthcare organisations are ill prepared for the high-risk mind-set of the #GenMobile workforce, new study by Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, says.

These organisations lack requisite security procedures in place to protect a new, more collaborative digital generation entering the workforce, the report adds. The security threat study revealed overall employee attitudes are swaying towards a more security-agnostic healthcare workplace, full of risk-prone sharing behaviours, with the trend having the potential to be contagious.

In an industry where more than a third (35%) of medical professionals report their organisation uses mobile apps to interact with patients, only three quarters of work mobile devices are password protected. The study, of over 1000 healthcare workers worldwide, goes on to highlight three key trends that show how #GenMobile is paving the way for risk-prone behaviour in the medical industry:

Sharing is becoming the norm: Six in ten share their work and personal devices with others regularly. Close to a fifth of employees don’t have passwords on either work or personal devices, with 20% of those stating they don’t have security measures in place so they can share more easily.

- Security-agnostic attitudes are rising: Of those employees who don’t have password-protection, close to half said it was because they weren’t worried about the threat. 89% of healthcare employees assume their IT department will keep them protected; however over a quarter (28%) have lost data due to the misuse of a mobile device. More worryingly, 37% of healthcare have given up work device passwords to colleagues, family members and others – and when asked, a tenth of these said they would give it up they received money.

- IT D.I.Y: Three quarters of healthcare respondents said they were willing to perform self-service IT. Furthermore, 68% said they have used personal devices at work for job-related tasks, with an additional 17% saying they would consider doing so in the future.

Jacob Chacko, business lead – SMB & Commercial, Middle East & Turkey at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, says: “A mobile technology-driven hospital or clinic will become the de-facto model for the healthcare industry, to the benefit of patients, visitors and practitioners. Drastic efficiency improvements can be made by embracing the connected mobile behaviours of the younger generation. This can help reduce misdiagnosis levels, whilst real time data can provide a greater level of patient health monitoring. However steps need to be made to ensure that advancement does not come at the cost of security – especially with depth of personal data at risk.”

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