CoWIN Portal Blamed For Data Breach: What Cybersecurity Experts Have To Say
Hospitals and healthcare organizations are being frequently targeted by cybercriminals. Read to know why we should be concerned about data breaches or leak of personal details?
Recently, a startling revelation of a data breach surfaced, claiming that the messaging service Telegram has access to the personal data of Indian individuals, including their Aadhaar and PAN cards. A report by Malayala Manorama claims that the CoWIN portal a Covid vaccination gateway where users submitted their personal information is to blame for the data breach.
We connected with a few cybersecurity experts to know their reactions on these reports as well as to understand the implications of data breaches.
The leak of personal details is concerning
Commenting on the data breach reports, Dr. Sanjay Katkar, Joint Managing Director and CTO, of Quick Heal Technologies, says, "Data breaches can have serious implications for individuals and can undermine trust in the systems that are designed to protect personal information. The leak of personal details like mobile numbers, Aadhaar numbers, passport numbers, voter IDs, is a matter of great concern. It could potentially lead to various forms of misuse, such as identity theft, phishing attempts, or other fraudulent activities."
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He stresses the need to continuously improve security infrastructure to prevent data breaches.
"Data privacy and security are vital aspects of any digital platform, particularly those that handle sensitive personal information. It is crucial to prioritise cybersecurity and implement measures to safeguard data. Such incidents serve as reminders for the need to continuously improve security infrastructure and ensure the protection of personal information," he adds.
Healthcare organizations are attractive targets for cybercriminals
Cyberattacks on hospitals and healthcare organizations are becoming more common these days. Why healthcare is being targeted frequently by cybercriminals?
Rohit Aradhya, vice president and managing director of Barracuda Networks India, answers, "The repeated occurrence of cyberattacks on public health hospitals, apps, and organizations can be attributed to several factors. The threat landscape is constantly evolving, with attackers adapting to new techniques and strategies to launch their attacks. This dynamic nature of cyber threats makes it challenging for organizations to stay ahead of malicious actors. Also, hospitals now handle and store vast amounts of personal data, which is incredibly valuable to criminal groups. This data can be exploited for various purposes, including accessing key health information, insurance fraud, or even holding organizations for ransom in exchange for financial gain. The significant value associated with healthcare data makes hospitals and healthcare organizations attractive targets for cybercriminals."
Mention may be made that last year, online services of AIIMS-Delhi were crippled by a ransomware attack, Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi faced a cyberattack and several attempts were made to hack the website of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
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