41.4 million affected by healthcare data breaches this year, nearing '22 totals

The number of people caught up in healthcare data breaches this year is already approaching 2022 levels, Politico reported July 10.

Healthcare organizations have reported 330 breaches affecting 41.4 million individuals through July 10, compared to 52 million for all of last year, according to the news outlet's analysis of HHS data. The top two breaches of 2023 alone affected nearly 16 million patients.

Politico attributed the increase to healthcare's increasing data digitization and hackers' realization of the value of stealing the information in ransomware attacks. But it also noted that several healthcare organizations admitted to data breaches involving marketing tracking technologies after HHS advised in December that the use of the "pixel" and analytics tools could be a violation of HIPAA.

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