Healthcare Business Under Attack: A Pentesting Overview

by Ben Brown | 04/24/2023

Ronin-Pentest – Healthcare Business Under Attack

Health care organisations are increasingly becoming a target for cyberattacks. Healthcare systems are often vulnerable to attacks because they have weak cybersecurity measures and lack the resources to defend against them. Many healthcare organisations do not have sufficient resources or skills to respond to the constantly evolving threat posed by cybersecurity attackers. Some security experts believe that the healthcare industry is "inherently vulnerable" to cyber attacks because it stores sensitive personal information like credit card numbers, financial records and medical records in centralised databases that hackers can access through multiple means of attack like phishing schemes, keyloggers and Trojans.

Key takeaways on cyber attacks on healthcare businesses

  1. Increased cyber threats: Healthcare businesses face a growing number of cyber threats due to the sensitive nature of patient data and the rapid adoption of digital health technologies.
  2. Regulatory compliance: Conducting penetration tests helps healthcare organisations meet regulatory requirements, such as HIPAA and GDPR, and avoid costly fines.
  3. Protect patient data: Penetration testing identifies vulnerabilities that could lead to unauthorised access to patient records, ensuring patient privacy and trust.
  4. Secure medical devices: Penetration testing can uncover potential weaknesses in connected medical devices, which could impact patient safety and treatment outcomes if compromised.
  5. Safeguard healthcare infrastructure: Regular pentesting helps protect healthcare facilities' critical infrastructure, including electronic health record systems and telemedicine platforms.
  6. Employee training: Penetration testing results can be used to train healthcare staff on the latest cybersecurity threats and best practices, promoting a security-aware culture.
  7. Third-party risk assessment: Pentesting helps healthcare organisations evaluate the security posture of third-party vendors and partners, reducing the risk of supply chain attacks.
  8. Continuous improvement: Regular penetration testing enables healthcare businesses to stay ahead of evolving cyber threats and maintain a robust security posture.

Healthcare systems are increasingly becoming a target for cyberattacks.

Healthcare systems are increasingly becoming a target for cyberattacks, as they hold valuable patient data which can be used to make money. The increase in frequency and severity of these attacks is alarming, which means it's essential that healthcare organisations take the necessary steps to protect themselves from breaches. Healthcare organisations are being targeted because they have access to personal information that can be sold on the Dark Web or used in other ways by malicious actors. There have also been many cases in which cybercriminals use ransomware against hospitals, demanding payment from them in exchange for unlocking their systems after an infection has taken place. It's vital that you understand how cybercriminals operate so you can better protect yourself from attacks like these! Many healthcare organisations lack resources or skills. The healthcare industry is under attack from a number of different threats, including but not limited to: Lack of resources. Many hospitals and other healthcare organisations do not have sufficient resources or skills to respond to the threat posed by cybersecurity threats. Lack of knowledge. Despite the fact that there are many resources available for teaching people how to secure their networks, these resources are often not utilised by hospital staff members who may find them too complicated.

The healthcare industry is "inherently vulnerable" to attacks.

Some security experts believe that the healthcare industry is "inherently vulnerable" to cyber attacks. Weak security measures and poor data management are two main reasons why this is the case. For example, many healthcare organisations don't conduct regular penetration testing or vulnerability assessments because they lack resources to do so. In addition to these inherent vulnerabilities, there are also external factors contributing to the threat of cyberattacks against healthcare organisations:

Healthcare Executives Predict Significant Data Breach Impact on Revenue and Profitability

According to a recent KPMG survey, 73% of healthcare executives believe there will be an increase in data breaches over the next 18 months, and 57% expect their company's revenue and profitability to drop significantly due to these breaches. According to the Ponemon Institute's 2018 Cost of Data Breach Study: Global Analysis, the average cost per lost or stolen record was $188 USD (up from $158 USD in 2017). In addition, companies experienced an average time lag between initial breach discovery and containment of 45 days--which can lead to additional fines from regulators or lawsuits from customers if sensitive information falls into unauthorised hands during this period.

Healthcare organisations with multiple locations or remote locations are particularly at risk of being compromised through cyberattacks.

One of the most significant risks facing healthcare organisations today is their vulnerability to cyberattacks. Cybercriminals are constantly finding new ways to exploit vulnerabilities in software, networks and systems--and healthcare organisations have a lot of them. In fact, many healthcare organisations have been targeted for years but have only recently begun to understand the full extent of their exposure. One reason for this lack of awareness is that most people don't think about healthcare facilities as being vulnerable targets for hackers; they assume that because it's a hospital or clinic or other medical facility with sensitive patient data on site, surely there must be some kind of security protecting those assets? But unfortunately this isn't always true--and even when there are appropriate measures in place at your organisation's main office location (which may include things like firewalls), those same protections might not exist at remote sites either because those resources aren't available or simply because no one thought about them before now!

The most common attack types include malware, ransomware and phishing campaigns.

Malware is malicious software that can be used to steal information, disrupt operations or cause damage to computers. Ransomware is a type of malware that restricts access to the computer system until a ransom is paid. Phishing scams are fraudulent emails sent in an attempt to trick victims into providing sensitive information such as usernames and passwords or financial details by pretending to be legitimate businesses or organisations (for example: healthcare organisations). Hackers may also target information after obtaining access credentials through keyloggers, Trojans or other methods.

A hacker may also target information after obtaining access credentials through keyloggers, Trojans or other methods.

Keystroke loggers are used to capture keystrokes on a system and can be used to extract passwords and other personal data. A Trojan is malware that runs in the background of your computer without you knowing it's there until something happens like your password being stolen or money being transferred from your bank account into theirs. Other methods include phishing emails, spoofing websites (making them look like legitimate sites), man-in-the-middle attacks where hackers intercept communications between two parties by placing themselves between them so they can eavesdrop on what's going on between them

Cyber criminals use phishing schemes because they are relatively easy to do and often victims won't even realise they were tricked until it's too late.

Phishing emails are a common way for cyber criminals to gain access to your personal information and make you their victim. To help you recognize these malicious emails, we've put together this handy guide on how to spot a phishing attack in the wild:

FAQs on Cybersecurity for healthcare businesses

As healthcare businesses face increasing cyber threats, penetration testing becomes an essential security practice. In our FAQs section, we address common questions and concerns related to pentesting in the healthcare industry, providing expert insights to help safeguard your organisation's sensitive data, infrastructure, and reputation.

How can healthcare businesses benefit from cybersecurity measures?

As a healthcare business, you need to ensure that your systems are secure and that customer data is protected. By implementing the right cybersecurity measures in your organisation, you can avoid becoming the next victim of a cyberattack and mitigate the damage caused by breaches. Your customers' trust is paramount to your success as a company. Protecting their personal information is crucial not only because it's ethically responsible but also because it helps protect their reputations as well as yours as an organisation. If customers feel their information has been compromised or stolen, they may be less likely to use your services again--or even recommend them to others! In addition to losing customers' trust through poor security practices and breaches, there are many other ways that hackers could damage your business:

What are the risks of data breach in healthcare institutions?

The healthcare industry is facing a number of risks in the form of data breach. Data breaches can result in a loss of revenue and customer trust, fines from regulators, legal action from customers and even loss of revenue if customers switch to competitors. Data breaches have become an everyday occurrence with hackers finding new ways to steal information. The consequences are also severe: fines up to millions or even billions of dollars; lawsuits resulting in costly settlements; negative publicity that damages your reputation as well as trust among your customers. There are several factors contributing to this situation including outdated systems and software patches, lack of security awareness among employees (especially those working remotely) who often have access to sensitive information via mobile devices such as laptops/tablets), poor network security measures like weak passwords which could easily be guessed by hackers etcetera."

Why should healthcare businesses invest in cybersecurity?

Healthcare businesses, like all other businesses, must protect their sensitive data. But that's only part of the story. Healthcare organisations also have a duty to protect patient trust and reputation, as well as their own business interests. Healthcare companies face unique challenges when it comes to cybersecurity because they store highly sensitive information about patients-- including their personal health history and insurance details--in databases that are accessible by many people within the organisation through various channels such as email or file-sharing sites like Dropbox or Box (which have been hacked before). If these systems are breached by an attacker who steals this information, it can have serious consequences for both patients and providers alike:

Should I invest in having employees trained in cybersecurity?

Employees need to be trained to recognize phishing emails, malware and ransomware. They also need to be trained on how to avoid keyloggers and Trojans. In addition, it's important that your employees understand the importance of keeping their passwords secure - as well as other sensitive information such as credit card numbers or social security numbers.

How common are data breaches right now in companies?

Data breaches are on the rise. The healthcare industry is a prime target for hackers, who know that healthcare organisations have access to sensitive data and can be forced into paying ransom if they don't comply with their demands. It's not just about protecting your own company's data--you need to make sure that your clients' information is protected as well! If someone breaks into one of your clients' systems, they might have access not just to their own records but yours as well...and all of it will be compromised at once if you don't take steps now."


If you're looking to protect your healthcare business from cyberattacks, it's important to understand the risks involved. There are many types of attacks that can be used against any organisation, but certain industries tend to be more vulnerable than others due to their unique nature. Healthcare organisations with multiple locations or remote locations are particularly at risk of being compromised through cyberattacks because hackers may target information after obtaining access credentials through keyloggers or Trojans.

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