Tag: information security

Information security is a journey, not a destination

At Prevayl, it’s our goal to set a new standard in data security and safety.

We sat down with our cyber security advisor, Pras Pimpalnerkar to discuss the importance of information security for modern organisations, how it impacts the healthcare industry, and the approach we’re taking to deliver a secure operating platform for our consumers and partners.

Pras has over 15 years’ experience in the information security industry and is a subject matter expert on a wealth of information security tools, processes, procedures and best practices. Here’s what he had to say.

Why is information security so important for modern organisations?

Confidentiality, integrity and availability are three pillars of information security and are vital for the success of any business.

When a traditional organisation is trading physical goods, the security is very visible and is applied at all stages of the lifecycle. This includes when the product in use (security sealed), in storage (physical security within a warehouse for example) or in transit (secure transit / cold transit). 

However, modern organisations also trade data; traditional security can’t be applied to something that is non-tangible.  In order for modern organisations to be successful, the information security principles of confidentiality, integrity and availability must be adopted to meet the modern risk of trading data.

Information security is the key for success for all modern organisations.

How crucial is data security for healthcare?

Any breach of information could be devastating for individuals experiencing it. 

However, a healthcare breach could have a long-lasting impact and potentially scar users for life. 

Human life (and quality of life) is not something that any organisation would ever want to compromise on.  Data security must be deemed as a core dependency for any organisation handing healthcare data.

Where do you think consumer concern around data misuse first began?

Every data breach has a ‘direct’ and an ‘indirect’ impact on end consumers. Direct breaches are those that directly affect a person involved such as a fraudulent transaction or unexpected outcome for example. Indirect breaches are those that affect the reputation or availability of a ‘known’ service.

When businesses handle data it completely changes the landscape and introduces a number of new risks that unfortunately, not all modern organisations were initially prepared for. 

Consumers also weren’t prepared and didn’t understand how to handle the direct impact of a data break; specifically, they didn’t know where to seek help or how to recover. This lack of knowledge and awareness by both parties started to concern consumers adopting modern technologies.

Hopefully, the new and tighter data protection regulations encourage modern organisations to adopt and follow information security best practices and improve consumer confidence in the process.

Where do companies go wrong when it comes to data use?

Companies need to acknowledge that data is potentially their primary asset and the fact that it isn’t tangible.

This acknowledgement will open up new opportunities for information security to be incorporated within their business. Whether they like it or not, this is the reality and the sooner companies acknowledge and adapt, the more secure they become.

How is Prevayl addressing consumer security concerns around data?

At Prevayl®, the entire team is aware of the changing landscape of a modern organisation and is committed to delivering a secure solution from the very first day.

The core principles of information security – confidentiality, integrity and availability – are built within all of our products and services.

What technology are you using to do this?

Information security is a journey and not a destination. 

We are focused on the development of a secure operating platform for our consumers and partners. We follow a ‘defence-in-depth’ security architecture model and are committed to adopting appropriate technologies and measures to address the evolving risk landscape.

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The healthcare industry and consumer data anxiety

The modern consumer understands the value of their data. With the increased importance of connected experiences, personalisation and tailored brand communication, consumer-data is currency.

Huge corporations deal in it, it’s the focus of mergers and acquisitions and unfortunately it’s at the centre of information security breaches. This has led to many people experiencing data anxiety about how their data is being used and how safe it is. The use of data and data security is always of critical importance to the work we do at Prevayl®.

Data Anxiety: Healthcare Industry  

No other industry experiences as many issues with information security as the healthcare industry.

Specifically four out of every five data breaches involve health data, while it is expected to cost the US healthcare industry $4billion by the end of 2019.

It affects the likes of hospitals, insurance companies, private healthcare providers, and pharmaceutical companies, making it no surprise that consumers are continuing to feel anxious about the safety of their health data.

The healthcare industry relies on internet-enabled technology. It has revolutionised the industry in various areas from how patient records and lab results are stored, to how equipment is used.

This is essential to improve the care provided to patients by facilitating data integration, patient engagement, and clinical support. The core issue is that these technologies can be vulnerable to information attack, resulting in patient data being stolen, and entire hospitals being shut down.

The NHS suffered a huge information security attack in 2017, which really alerted people in the UK to the value and vulnerability of their health data.

The good news is that the industry is changing to better protect this data, with those in the health sector in the UK increasing their spending on cyber security by 500% in figures released this week.

Not only that, there is an increased commitment to recruit chief information security officers to ensure cyber security procedures and processes are adequately implemented and followed. This is something that was previously lacking according to reports from last year.

The latter is essential for any company or body involved in the collection and processing of health data. Consumers need to feel confident in the information security measures put in place by all entities that collect their individual health data.

Data Anxiety: The use of personal health data

Misuse of personal data sourced from information hacks is clearly one area of concern that is fuelling consumer information security anxiety.

Another is how it is set to be used by those companies that collect and store it. This was again thrown into light by the recent acquisition of Fitbit by Google, with the worry amongst consumers being that any existing and future health data sourced from Fitbit devices is to be used to power Google’s advertising arm.

This has been denied by all parties concerned. What the focus of the deal should be is the importance this could have to the future of the industry as a whole.

Health data and innovation in healthcare

As we move into 2020, the importance of health data is only set to intensify.

The insights gained are set to fuel the next innovations in the sector promising a better experience for individuals and the ability to make informed choices about how to live healthier lives.

At Prevayl, our wearable technology is enabling the creation of the world’s most advanced health-tech eco-system.

Through the collection of more bio-data from the human body than any current leading wearable device, we’re powering the largest ever known platform of human insights. Health data is at the core of our mission.

As is the benefit to the end user. They have the ability to interact with their own health data in their own personal curated health management system. Crucially, our technology ensures that this data is always anonymous, unless explicitly agreed to by each user. It’s from this health management system that each individual will obtain their own tailored insights to assist them to make the right decisions for their own personal health.

That’s the benefit of health data to the end user. Our commitment to data protection, privacy and information security is central to our consumer-driven approach to health data.

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