1 in 3 data breaches target healthcare, report finds

Data breaches on the Colonial Pipeline and meat-processing company JBS have brought nationwide attention to cyberattacks. Yet 34 percent of data breaches are concentrated in the healthcare industry, according to a June 7 report by software company ForgeRock.

Three report findings:

  1. The U.S. experienced the highest costs from data breaches in the world in 2020, with the average breach costing $8.64 million and a total of 1.48 billion records exposed. The healthcare industry had the highest cost per compromised record at $474.

  2. Phishing accounted for 25 percent of all breaches, and ransomware accounted for 17 percent, a 7 percentage point increase from 2019. The healthcare sector was a primary target because hackers knew leaders would rather pay than put patients' lives at risk with disruption of service, the report said. 

  3. The healthcare and financial sectors experienced the most reputational harm from data breaches, the report found.

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