Health data breaches reports increase by 11% in Q1 of 2017

New figures from the Information Commissioner’s Office point to an increase in health data breaches reported in the first quarter of 2017.

[London, UK] Reports of data breaches in the health sector submitted to the Information Commission’s Office (ICO) in the first quarter of 2017 have increased by 11%, new figures show.

The ICO has published a new report this week on data security trends, with the most common type of breaches in health being the loss or theft of paperwork and accidental sending of data to unauthorised parties.

However, the ICO notes that reporting of data breaches is mandatory in this field, which might explain why figures are always higher in comparison to other sectors. 

At the end of August, Nottinghamshire County Council received a fine of £70,000 after a member of the public discovered information about the care of vulnerable people in the area on an online portal through a search engine. 

Further statistics from the ICO show the number of reported cyber attacks decreased by 17%, although they continue to be classified as a ‘key risk’. 

This month, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker vowed to boost cybersecurity defence across the EU with a suite of new proposals that include the development of a new EU Cybersecurity Agency. 

Two reviews on the impact of the WannaCry attack on the NHS are expected to be published this autumn, one by the National Audit Office and another by the NHS Chief Information Officer Will Smart.

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Data security incident trends

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