Healthcare data breaches in Q3 were higher than in Q1 and Q2

The latter half of 2016 is shaping to be much worse for healthcare data breaches than the first six months of the year, according to the Protenus Breach Barometer.

The Barometer, which utilizes data from DataBreaches.net, is a monthly comparison of reported or disclosed breaches impacting the healthcare industry.

Here are six things to know about its most recent report.

1. The number of data breaches during the first six months of this year was 55 percent lower than the number of breaches thus far in the latter half of 2016. While there was an average of 25.3 breaches per month during the first half of the year, there was an average of 39.3 incidents per month so far during the latter half.

2. In September, there were approximately 37 data breaches reported to HHS or disclosed in the media. Data regarding the number of patients impacted was available for 32 of the incidents, with a total of 246,876 records breached.

3. The majority of data breaches in September were insider incidents. Approximately 41 percent — 15 incidents — of the breaches were insider incidents. Seven of these 15 were accidental, and eight were due to insider wrongdoing. Of the 13 incidents for which Protenus has numbers, 50,695 patient records were breached.

4. Most data breaches involved healthcare providers. While 33 incidents involved healthcare providers, two incidents involved health plans and one incident involved a business associate or vendor.

5. In September, there was an average of 151 days between the time the breach was discovered and when the entity reported it to HHS. In August, there was an average of 558 days between when the breach was discovered and when a provider reported it to HHS.

6. There were approximately 21 states affected by breaches in September. California suffered the most breaches during the month with 11 total incidents, followed by Pennsylvania, which reported four.

Click here to read the full report.

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