Even though a majority of healthcare organisations are either storing all or a major share of their data in the cloud, many of them are yet to increase their cloud security budgets or get adequate financial support to ensure data stored in the cloud is safe from unauthorised access or loss.
A new survey conducted by Netwrix found that while 74 percent of healthcare organisations store healthcare data in the cloud, a similar number of them store employee data in the cloud and 68 percent store customer data in the cloud.
32% of healthcare organisations are storing ALL of their data in the cloud
In total, 32 percent of healthcare organisations store ALL of their data, including healthcare data, customer data, and employee data, in the cloud. Such widespread adoption of cloud services by healthcare organisations suggests a huge trust factor that exists between healthcare firms and cloud services, as well as the fact that organisations believe cloud databases can secure their data from being accessed by third-parties or being stolen by malicious actors.
However, the latter is certainly not the case as among organisations that store all of their data in the cloud, 26 percent have suffered cyber security incidents in the past twelve months. Such organisations also admit that the security of data they store in the cloud is not guaranteed and that a lot more needs to be done to enhance the security of data stored in the cloud.
According to Netwrix's survey, while 70 percent of healthcare organisations are planning to start encrypting data stored in the cloud, half of them want to start monitoring activities around such data, and 44 percent are planning to enforce stricter security policies.
But all of these require money and enhanced investments and this is where healthcare organisations are stuttering. As many as 85 percent of healthcare organisations did not see an increase in their cloud security budgets in 2019 and 30 percent admitted that they do not get adequate financial support for cloud security initiatives from their management.
As a result, nearly 18 percent of healthcare organisations are considering moving their data back from the cloud to their premises. Among such organisations, 56 percent want to do so as they have concerns over the security of their data stored in the cloud, 22 percent are concerned about the reliability and performance of cloud services, and 22 percent are concerned about the high costs of storing data in the cloud.
High costs, security concerns forcing firms to move data back on premises
The survey also noted that while 33 percent of organisations that want to move data back on premises want to move healthcare data first, a similar number of them want to move customer data first, and just 11 percent of them want to migrate employee data first from cloud servers to their own data centres.
The overall attitude towards storing 100% of data in the cloud is also conservative among organisations across all sectors. While 35 percent of small organisations are likely to move their entire IT infrastructure to the cloud within the next five years, just 25 percent of medium-sized organisations and 23 percent of enterprises plan to do so in the next five years.
"Of those who store all their data in the cloud, 43% would start by moving the personal data of their customers back on premises, and 26% would start with employee information. These findings match one of the major trends in the privacy space — organisations are trying to focus their efforts on securing the personal data on their customers and employees due to tightened compliance regulations and increased attention from the public about the security of their PII," Netwrix noted.
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