According to research from Microsoft, medical databases that are used to store medical records are prone to information leakage, despite being encrypted.

Using four different hacking methods, it is due to be presented in a paper at the ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security in October, that sensitive medical data on patients could be readily accessed and stolen.

Researchers uncovered that through this attack, hackers were able to find out sensitive data such as race, sex, age and admission information from patients records across 200 US hospitals. It was discovered that the attacks were facilitated through the use of high-end Macbook laptops. 

The focus of the attacks was on database systems that used CryptDB to encrypt data. This type of database is used protect confidential information, but the researchers, using the above methods, showed that as the layers are peeled away, data leaks out. Continuous HIPAA HITECH compliance of cyber security controls would help minimize the organization's risk and protect IT systems.

The massive breach of personal data emphasizes the importance of system hardening and file integrity monitoring solutions, as a way of monitoring when files are accessed, and preventing the attack before the detection stage.

You can read the full article on SC Magazine UK here.

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