Are Retirement Communities More at Risk of Cybersecurity Threats?

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Walker Mayfield Walker Mayfield

Cybercrime is on the rise, and the consequences for not protecting yourself or your place of work can be difficult and expensive. Within a retirement community, having your data stolen or being unable to access it can present major problems that can have serious consequences for both employees and residents of the community. Investing in cybersecurity and making sure everyone who works there has an understanding of best practices for your organization is essential, especially if you’re operating a retirement home or community. However, for those who don’t have experience dealing with cybersecurity or cyberattacks, it can be difficult to know what the best steps to take are or how you can be more prepared. If you work in the retirement industry or are concerned about cyberattacks, read on to learn about whether or not retirement communities are more at risk of cybersecurity threats.

What are some common cybersecurity threats?

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It’s important to stay up to date on what the latest trends are within the cybersecurity world. There are different types of cybercrimes and nefarious actors are always looking for ways to find vulnerabilities or create more powerful malware. Email phishing attacks are one of the most common causes of cyberattacks, and seniors who aren’t familiar with technology may be more likely to fall victim to them. Email phishing scams are designed to trick people out of giving up sensitive information that could be used to log into bank accounts or steal an identity.

Ransomware has also become commonly used by cybercriminals. If you aren’t familiar, ransomware attacks typically involve locking a user out of their system or stealing their data, then forcing them to pay to regain access. Some ransomware hackers even threaten to release data to the public, which can create serious trust issues for your company and severe problems for your customers.

If you’re interested in working in cybersecurity, it may be a good idea to invest in a cyber security course. You can train and be prepared to handle entry-level roles dealing with cybersecurity in less than a year. Not only that, but many programs even allow you to take classes virtually, so you can study no matter where you live. Given the demonstrated need for qualified analysts and experts in cybersecurity, you’re likely to find meaningful work and plenty of opportunities.

Is a retirement community more at risk for a cyberattack?

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Given that hospitals have been targeted in recent ransomware attacks, it makes sense that retirement communities could be at risk too. Hackers often look for targets that have a lot of sensitive information, as they may believe that the company would be willing to pay a significant amount of money to retrieve it or prevent it from being leaked publicly.

Businesses and services that primarily work with the elderly also tend to be targeted more often for scams and other types of cyberattacks. This is because hackers perceive older people as less technologically inclined and easier to trick. It’s a smart idea to try to teach residents of the community as much as you can about staying secure online.

Every business should invest in cybersecurity, but businesses that are responsible for health information and financial transactions should be even more cautious. There are many recent examples of cyberattacks like ransomware causing serious issues for a number of companies and essential services. Given the serious risks and potential for catastrophic outcomes, it’s more than worth it to ensure that every retirement community is prepared for the possibility that they may be the victim of a cybercrime one day. Since retirement communities contain lifesaving infrastructure and often handle large amounts of sensitive data, they could be seen as a prime target by a number of bad actors online.

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