For a second consecutive year, the time for Kaspersky to make its predictions for the healthcare sector comes amid the global COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, the virus still dominates most aspects of our lives, and, of course, the pandemic remained the biggest and most-discussed topic in medicine.
Part of our predictions last year were based on the assumption that in 2021, the pandemic will continue for at least a few months and, because this assumption turned out to be accurate, so did many of our predictions.
As we predicted, there was a significant increase in the number and size of medical data leaks. A 2021 report by Constella Intelligence found that the number of personal data leaks in healthcare grew by half when compared to 2019. Several factors contributed to that. First, the digitization of healthcare has significantly increased over these past couple of years, and thus, because there was more data to leak, the volume of these leaks increased. Second, cybercriminals had already started paying more attention to the industry, and they certainly lost none of their interest in 2021. As we predicted, they continued to use the medical theme as bait and, as a result, their victims were often medical professionals.