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Why hospitals suffer from cybercrimes and how they can protect themselves

Year-over-year cyber experts warn the healthcare industry they are among the most targeted industries for cybercrimes. Why is this? And how can hospitals protect themselves?

Patient care is at risk when hospitals are attacked by cyber crimes. (Photo/Health.mil)

The problem: By the numbers

Though the problem of hospitals being targeted for cybercrimes isn’t new, it’s one that hasn’t been properly rectified.

A 2013 Ponemon Institute survey revealed that 94 percent of healthcare organizations experienced at least one breach over since 2011 and nearly half (45%) were struck by more than five. And, since 2013, the impact hasn’t lessened.

A 2016 study by the same institute shows that 89% of studied healthcare organizations have experienced a data breach, which involved patient data being stolen or lost, over the past two years.

A specific example comes from 2017, and a worldwide cyberattack by a ransomware called WannaCry. This attack shutdown 65 hospitals in the United Kingdom. The impact of WannaCry wasn’t just on hospital computers during this attack. The reach was much greater impacting patient care, storage refrigerators, MRI machines and other critical medical equipment that operate from the hospital’s networks.

In 2016 a study by security company Solutionary found that healthcare industry was the victim of 88% of all ransomware attacks in the U.S.

So, it’s obvious that cybersecurity in hospitals is increasingly important. Why are hospitals targeted so specifically?

Why are hospitals targeted?

Hackers can take total control over hospitals. From computers with pertinent patient data to MRI machines, hackers know that hospitals will do anything to recover control of their equipment quickly.

That’s what makes them uniquely susceptible to ransomware.

Ransomware is a type of malware that locks a user out of their computer or files until a sum of money has been paid. And hospitals have a lot to lose if they are unable to access their equipment.

The most obvious issue is HIPAA compliance. If a hacker steals patient information, hospitals can be on the hook for fines, lawsuits and loss of reputation. And while privacy is important, it’s not the whole picture.

It’s also important to note that during attacks like ransomware, hospitals can lose access to patient information which can halt care. Especially if ransomware affects critical medical equipment. This doesn’t just halt hospital operations, it risks lives.

A 2016 IBM survey found that 70% of businesses who have had experience with ransomware attacks in their workplace have paid to have stolen data returned.  And, it’s estimated data breaches cost the U.S. healthcare industry an estimated $6.2 billion, annually, according to the Ponemon Institute.

How can hospitals begin to protect themselves?

What should hospitals do to protect themselves?

Ransomware is the most prevalent threat in the healthcare industry. It can delay patient care, delete data, cost money, impact employee productivity, and force a HIPAA breach notification, all from a single infection.

To prevent, fight and recover from a ransomware attack we recommend the following:

  1. Install quality antivirus and antimalware programs on all computers and servers.
  2. Have a provider scan all website and email traffic before it enters the network.
  3. Train all staff to recognize a ransomware threat and how to avoid becoming infected.
  4. All hospitals should perform regular risk assessments. Can you find vulnerabilities before a hacker can?
  5. Backup your information and password protect your backup.
  6. Limit access to your information. Only grant permissions to select staff members, and authorize access using EZPD shared licenses.

Though nothing can truly guarantee the prevention of ransomware, the aforementioned measures may help with HIPAA violations and act as a line of defense to protect sensitive files.  

Use a password protection as your first and strongest line of defense. Learn more about how EZPD can protect hospitals today.

5 things you need to know about cybersecurity

In 2017, cybersecurity concerns dominated headlines. Between Equifax, Uber, and the SEC, virtually every aspect of the human experience was touched by cybersecurity and privacy concerns.

And, while major companies like Uber are the ones that tend to make headlines, the majority of cybercrime is directed at much smaller companies or even individual consumers. As a result, we must be increasingly diligent about learning about cybersecurity and protecting ourselves from attacks.

Read on to discover what you need to know about cybersecurity and how it impacts you, personally.

What is cybersecurity? 

Cybersecurity deals with technologies, processes and practices that protect sensitive information from attacks, damage or unauthorized access. The first line of cybersecurity defense is a strong password to protect your most sensitive information. 

Cybercrime is on the rise. How can you protect yourself? (Photo/Pixabay)

How widespread is the problem?

It’s hard to get an accurate number on the number of cyberattacks that happen each day, as the minor cyber incidents continue to grow and are often unreported. Still, here are some striking figures that might put the severity of cybercrime into perspective.

  • The FBI reported that since January 1, 2016, an average of 4,000 ransomware attacks occurs on a daily basis. Ransomware is only one type of cyber attack, it also happens to be the most expensive for victims. 
  •  Cyber Security Ventures, a cybercrime research organization, predicts cybercrime damage costs to hit $6 trillion annually by 2021. 
  • High ranking organizations such as the Pentagon and National Nuclear Security Administration reports getting millions of cyberattack attempts every day.

 Who are the victims?

It’s not just mega-corporations and high-profile organizations that are targeted. In fact, the largest demographic experiencing cybercrime are small to medium-sized businesses and individual consumers.

This segment makes for an easy target because they tend to spend less to protect infrastructure and pay less attention to detail when it comes to password creationThese three demographics often think that cyberattacks won’t get them. Until it does.

According to a report by Verizon

  • 61% of the data breach victims in this year’s report are businesses with under 1,000 employees. 
  • 81% of hacking-related breaches leveraged either stolen and/or weak passwords. 

Always remember, if there is a vulnerability, it will be exploited.

What do thieves do with the information?

There are many things thieves can do once they have breached your internet accounts, password protected documents, secure servers, application software, or anything else that holds sensitive information.

Thieves can obtain financial, medical and personal information which can all be sold on the black market for a price. Attacks in of themselves are big business, especially ransomware.

According to the aforementioned Verizon study, in the 2016 ransomware was the 5th most common form of malware and the most common in the Crimeware pattern. Ransomware means an attacker will hold files on your computer for ransom. Once a user pays, usually anonymously via Bitcoin, the files are released. It is fast, low risk and easily monetizable.

What do you need to keep in mind?

Change your strategy. Don’t rely on practices that are already implemented, just because it’s the way you’ve always done things. Technology is fast-moving and hackers are always moving.

The safest way for you to protect your information is by using software like EZPD.

EZPD is a password generation and regeneration software that keeps users protected from the ever-evolving world of cybercrime. EZPD’s proprietary algorithm ensures that no one can hack your password.

With EZPD, users can generate complex passwords that include (or exclude) special characters and numbers and can be up to 96 characters long.

EZPD provides users with unique license files that unlock a customized software experience for the individual user. Without the license file specific to your device, you cannot access your passwords.

After you’ve created a unique, complex password, you can delete EZPD’s program and license file from your computer to erase tracks of your password. EZPD does not store your information or require remembering a master password to unlock, unlike most password managers.

When you need to access your password again (or generate a new one) you can redownload EZPD’s program and license file from the link provided to you upon sign up.

Businesses that don’t protect themselves with secure passwords have a lot to lose. Learn how EZPD can protect you.

And, for continued reading, learn howwith limited resources small and medium-sized businesses of all types can protect themselves from cyber vulnerabilities.

Do you suffer from password syndrome?

This unclassified syndrome is very real. Creating passwords strong enough to pass security measures gives us all a headache. Not only that, finding out how to store and remember them is even more challenging.

We’ve all experienced it. So, what can you do to overcome password syndrome?

passwords syndrome

Creating complex passwords can be a nightmare. How can you eliminate password syndrome? (Photo/Pixabay)

Why it’s so hard to create strong passwords

It’s imperative to create longer, more complex passwords that are unique to each of our password and internet accounts. The more stipulations an account has on their password requirements, the more difficult it is to create and remember your login information.  

Common password requirements are:

  • Between 8-20 characters
  • At least 3 special characters
  • Hasn’t been used in the last three password creations
  • Isn’t a variation of a dictionary word

You can see how it’s easy to develop password syndrome.

While it’s important that we satisfy each of these components for the safety of our files, it can be daunting to think of the passwords and even worse remember them.

Storing passwords is part of the trouble

Due to the complexity of passwords, it’s impossible for us to memorize them. The logical step is to save our information somewhere that is accessible. The problem is, no matter how strong your password is, if it’s stored insecurely, you’re still susceptible to being hacked.

Storing passwords as sticky notes on your computer are easily seen. Emailing your passwords to yourself means if your email account is hacked, your passwords will be compromised. And, writing passwords down makes it easy to misplace or lose your information.

And, using password managers aren’t safe because there is no way of knowing how safe the program holding your password is.

The only entirely secure way to handle passwords is by using a program like EZPD where passwords are never stored.

As a result, people are still using bad passwords

The more frustrated we get, or the more difficult it is to achieve standards, the less we try.

Users often use easy to remember (and hack) passwords such as “123456”, “111111” or “password”. Even using ways to obfuscate commonly used words like “password” to “p@ssw0rd”, are still easily hackable.

If a mass amount of users continue to rely on easily identified passwords, cybercriminals will continue to hack our information.

So, what’s the compromise?

Find a solution that creates unhackable passwords and offers a better alternative to storing them on your computer, physically, or in the cloud. Like EZPD.

EZPD is a password generation and regeneration software that keeps users protected from the ever-evolving world of cybercrime. EZPD’s proprietary algorithm is the first of its kind. It operates from a license file which is specific to an individual’s computer. And, no one can use your EZPD account without the license file.

With EZPD, users can generate passwords up to 94 characters long. Users can also specify if their passwords need to include special characters and numbers, and which to include or exclude to satisfy password requirements.

Users don’t need to rack their brain trying to generate a unique password. EZPD does it for you and all you need to do it copy and paste where ever you need security. Our users commonly use EZPD to protect:

  • Internet accounts
  • Password protected documents
  • Secure servers
  • Application software

After you’ve created a unique, complex password, you can delete EZPD’s program and license file from your computer to erase tracks of your password. When you need to access your password again (or generate a new one) you can redownload EZPD’s program and license file from the link provided to you upon sign up.

You can redownload and regenerate the same password an unlimited about of times.  

With EZPD your passwords are never saved. In fact, you never even have to make them visible. It’s the most secure option on the market. Learn more about EZPD’s free trial download today.

A strong password might be harder to create than you think (here’s why)

Online attacks are growing every day. Consequently, requirements for strong passwords have become more stringent. Nonetheless, they are essential for keeping your most private information safe.

And, as it turns out, what you think is a strong password might actually be an easy hack.

Read on to learn about what a strong password entails and what to look out for when creating your next password.

What are online attacks?

strong password

As concerns about cyber security grow, creating strong passwords is increasingly important.
(Photo/Max Pixel)

An online attack occurs when someone attempts to log in to a website or internet account by guessing someone else’s username and password.

Whether an attacker aims to gain access to your email account, or they plan to compromise and steal information from a corporation, online attacks can have massive ramifications. A few effects of online attacks can include, theft of money, loss of business reputation, and theft of financial information.

Most attackers use computer programs to systematically generate and guess combinations of passwords. Cracking programs typically understand that humans can be predictable.

Most of the popular passwords are easy strings of numbers, words found in a dictionary, or dictionary words obfuscated by symbols.

According to Fortune magazine, some of the most common passwords are:

  1. 123456
  2. Password
  3. 12345678
  4. Qwerty
  5. 12345
  6. 123456789

As you can see, some of the most common passwords are closely related, or easy to guess.

It’s important to remember that any system that’s online, or local to your computer, is subject to an attack. Online attacks are increasingly easy to perform, which makes it important for you to protect yourself.

That’s why you need to learn more about password strength in order to protect yourself.

How is a strong password determined?

Typically, the length and complexity of your password will reflect the strength of your password.  

As a general rule of thumb, the longer your password the harder it will be to crack. Especially if you combine factors like:

  • Special characters
  • Lowercase and uppercase letters
  • Words not found in the dictionary

Programs like EZPD create passwords up to 96 characters long to ensure maximum strength.

How should you store your passwords?

Creating a strong password is an important first step. However, storing your password is equally significant.

The problem most of us face is, the longer and more unique a password, the harder it can be to remember. And storing your password irresponsibly can compromise your information.

Because of this, we rely on password managers. But, many password managers use a cloud or a server to remember what passwords they have generated for their uses. Therein lies the problem. Servers and clouds can also be hacked. Therefore, what seems like a secure method for password generation may not be after all.

Additionally, password managers and browsers may allow users to create a master password.

A master password is a single key to unlocking all doors. However, if a master password is compromised, all passwords stored in the cloud or on a PC will be lost. And, master passwords aren’t immune to theft. If you do create a master password, it needs to be incredibly strong. The master password is your first line of defense.

The only way to truly feel protected is by using a program that creates strong, unique passwords and does not store your information or require a master password. Luckily, EZPD checks off all of these boxes.

EZPD uses a unique method with node-locking software which means that your password is never stored, only regenerated. And only computers with your unique license file are able to regenerate your password.

After you create your password, you can delete your license file making it a completely untraceable process.

When you’re ready to regenerate your existing password—or generate a new password— you can redownload your license file and easily access your sensitive information again.

Additionally, you can download the license file as often as you’d like.

How can you ensure you have a strong password?

As hacking software continues to get stronger, online password strength meters that are common for creating or checking passwords can’t keep up. Therefore, just because the meter shows a strong password doesn’t make it entirely reliable. Users must take matters into their own hands.

Realistically, the only way to know you have a strong password is by using unique and advanced software to outwit hackers.

That’s where EZPD comes in. When you use EZPD, you don’t need to think twice about your password strength. Our proprietary algorithm does all the heavy lifting for you.

Learn more about how EZPD can protect you today.

The Key to Creating a Strong Password

yjdtyjtyWith all of the cybercrime that is occurring in the world today, more and more people are concerned about protecting their online accounts and personal information. One of the most important skills you need to learn in order to protect yourself is how to create strong passwords. In this quick guide, we’ll give you a few tips and tricks that can help you create a strong and secure password for all of your accounts.

Use a Unique Password for Every Account

It may be easier on your memory to use the same password for everything, but if a hacker has access to one of your accounts, they can get into them all. Avoid the chain reaction and keep your accounts secure with separate passwords.

Mix it Up

Make sure you use a diverse mix of letters, numbers, and symbols.

Avoid Common Words

Don’t use any distinct words or personal information, like a pet’s name, in your password. This makes it too easy to guess.

Download EZPD

EZPD is a password generating and regenerating software that creates strong, secure passwords for you. The best part is that none of your passwords are stored, so they can’t be accessed by hackers. Contact us today for more information.

Why You Should Avoid Password Managers

trthtrhrthrtIf you need to use the internet for any aspect of your daily life, you’ve probably heard of password managers. If you need to keep track of many different complex passwords for different online accounts, you’ve probably either thought about using one, or you are using one. After all, it’s very convenient to have all of your passwords stored in one place so you don’t have to memorize them, right? Well, you may want to rethink that.

Password Managers Store Your Passwords

This is the main problem that faces password managers. No matter what kind of security measures the manager has in place, the fact of the matter is that your personal information is being stored on a computer. Anything that is stored on a computer is vulnerable to hacking.

There is a Better Option

In this age of technology, you cannot keep your personal online information safe without complex, hard to memorize passwords, so you need a secure password generator. EZPD Software is a password generator that is designed to provide you with strong, complicated passwords without storing that password anywhere. It simply regenerates the password whenever you need it.

Contact us today for more information about this amazing software.

New Product – EZPD Software

sfeessssYou may have heard of password managers before – perhaps you even use one, but have you ever thought about whether or not your password manager is safe? The main problem that faces password managers is that they are created to store passwords, which means the keys to your personal online information are bundled up neatly in one convenient location. This may be easy and convenient for you, but if a hacker should find one of your passwords, they can get them all. The key to having a secure password is not only to make sure it is complex and strong, but to also avoid storing your passwords.

 

EZPD Software is a unique program that generates complex and secure passwords without storing them, so you know your information will be safe. All you have to do is input the parameters you require for your password. How many characters do you need? What kind of characters should be included or excluded?  It’s really that simple.

 

You can get the best password generator available from our website. To find out more information about our software and to get a free trial, visit EZPD.co, today.

Welcome to the EZPD Software Blog

psssssssAs technology advances, the need for stronger, more complex passwords is rising. With stories of identity theft and account hacking popping up in the news every day, it’s become increasingly difficult to protect yourself on the internet. That’s where EZPD Software comes in. Unlike password managers, EZPD does not store your password anywhere, making it much safer. With our password generating software, you can create strong passwords that are easy to remember without having to spend any time thinking about it. You simply tell the software how many characters the password needs to be, and what symbols to include or exclude.

In this blog we will discuss various topics related to password security and internet safety; so if you would like to learn how to keep your online data protected, you should subscribe.

You put a lot of information on the internet, whether you’re shopping online or making personal profiles on social media sites. The last thing you need is for someone to hack your online accounts and steal sensitive information. Take the first step to protecting your online information by downloading EZPD Software. It’s convenient to use, and it does not store your passwords. Learn more about this amazing software and download your own copy at EZPD.co.