Special Issue "Cyber Security and Data Privacy for Healthcare Industry"

A special issue of Healthcare (ISSN 2227-9032). This special issue belongs to the section "Health Informatics and Big Data".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 14 June 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Ching-Hsien Hsu
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Leading Guest Editor
College of Information and Electrical Engineering, Department of Computer Science, Asia University, Taiwan
Interests: structural health monitoring; smart civil infrastructure systems; deployment of advanced sensors; energy harvesting; civil engineering system informatics
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Dr. Amir H. Alavi
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Assistant Guest Editor
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Department of Bioengineering, Swanson School of Engineering, University of Pittsburgh, USA
Interests: structural health monitoring; smart civil infrastructure systems; deployment of advanced sensors; energy harvesting; civil engineering system informatics
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Dr. Mianxiong Dong
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Assistant Guest Editor
Department of Sciences and Informatics, Muroran Institute of Technology, 27-1 Mizumoto-cho, Muroran, Hokkaido, 050-8585, Japan
Interests: wireless networks; cloud computing; cyberphysical systems
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Dr. Ning Zhang
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Assistant Guest Editor
Department of Computer Sciences,Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi, 6300 Ocean Dr.,Corpus Christi, TX. 78412, USA.
Interests: next-generation mobile networks; mobile edge computing; security
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In recent decades, the technologies of E-health systems and cyber security have experienced a sequence of evolutionary inventions as it significantly promotes the quality of human life. Cyber security is a ubiquitous paradigm that provides a set of standards and protocols to protect networks, devices, and data from cyber-attacks and several other network vulnerabilities. Anything (mobiles, smart devices, computers, etc.) that communicate through the internet are subject to the risk of security breaches and requires greater attention. The size of the cyber market is wide, which includes numerous sectors such as manufacturing, finance, healthcare, telecommunications, information technology, government, transport systems, retail, production, energy, and utilities, etc. For these sectors, cybersecurity acts as a backbone of the economy as they are highly concerned about security measures. Healthcare possesses the most predominant role among these sectors as it contains the most confidential patient information. Here, the cyber attacks on Electronic Health Records (EHR) may jeopardize the patients' safety by losing access to patient personal information and medical devices. Similarly, wearable devices that are used to monitor patient movement and gesture, track regular activity, monitor organ functioning, and diagnosis of diseases when exposed to security breaches shall cause great damage both to the patients and the healthcare provider. To overcome these security and privacy issues faced by patients, pharmaceutical and healthcare organizations holistic approaches should be involved with cyber-enabled features.  

It is also well known that healthcare sectors aim to minimize the severity and advancement of diseases with improved digital approaches. Body Area Networks (BAN), Electronic Health Records (EHR), Personal Health Records (PHR), mobile Health (mHealth), patient portals, and patients health applications are some of the considerable evolution of healthcare systems using advanced digital approaches. Thus, the revolutionary approaches for healthcare systems do not only prevent disease occurrence, rather it tracks and monitors every aspect of the patient’s health through projected body sensors and interconnected Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Hence, healthcare applications generate a huge volume of data every second.  Storage and processing of health data are highly crucial as it is concerned with several security risks. Even a breakthrough in a single terabyte of data can lead to highly vulnerable security threats and adversely affect the patient’s lives. To the most important, online health records are not HIPPA constraints and may subject to various levels of privacy and cybersecurity concerns. In response to the increasing threats and breaches, researchers across the world started focusing on effective solutions for cybersecurity across E-health infrastructures. Moreover, Effective firewall, regular software updates, authentication, limited network access, controlled system access, protected apps, and regular risk assessment are some of the security practices that can make the cyber-based security system more effective. However, it is more complex to define accurate cybersecurity solutions and to recognize standard cybersecurity requirements for healthcare systems.

This special issue is intended to foster effective applications of cybersecurity and data privacy solutions for healthcare systems. Researchers and academicians from various backgrounds are requested to submit their novel and unpublished solutions for healthcare systems using cybersecurity and data privacy mechanisms. The topics of the special issue include but not limited to the following:

  • Trust-based protocols for healthcare applications
  • Achieving data security and privacy across healthcare applications using cybersecurity mechanisms
  • Authentication and Access control mechanisms for healthcare applications
  • Real-time healthcare monitoring and security alerting systems
  • Fog and cloud computing for secure healthcare solutions
  • IoT assisted secure solutions for healthcare applications
  • Artificial Intelligence algorithms for earlier analysis and prediction of cyber threats in Smart Healthcare
  • Multi-agent cybersecurity solutions for healthcare applications
  • The role of computational intelligence in cybersecurity solutions for healthcare applications
  • Enhancing privacy and data security across healthcare applications using blockchain and distributed ledger concepts
  • Security and Privacy for Internet of Medical Things
  • Cyber Security threats on the Internet of connected mobile ambulance
  • Security solutions for e-healthcare industry
  • Case studies for innovative techniques to protect patients’ information using cybersecurity
  • Future challenges of emerging cyber-threats to health infrastructure
  • Recent advances in cybersecurity for addressing security practices in Healthcare institutions

Dr. Ching-Hsien Hsu
Dr. Amir H. Alavi
Dr. Mianxiong Dong
Dr. Ning Zhang
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Healthcare is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Cybersecurity
  • Data analytics
  • Machine learning
  • Block chain
  • Healthcare
  • Data privacy
  • Internet of Medical Things
  • E-healthcare

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Enhancing Privacy and Data Security across Healthcare Applications Using Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Concepts
Healthcare 2020, 8(3), 243; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare8030243 - 29 Jul 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Nowadays, blockchain is developing as a secure and trustworthy platform for secure information sharing in areas of application like banking, supply chain management, food industry, energy, the Internet, and medical services. Besides, the blockchain can be described in a decentralized manner as an [...] Read more.
Nowadays, blockchain is developing as a secure and trustworthy platform for secure information sharing in areas of application like banking, supply chain management, food industry, energy, the Internet, and medical services. Besides, the blockchain can be described in a decentralized manner as an immutable ledger for recording data entries. Furthermore, this new technology has been developed to interrupt a variety of data-driven fields, including the health sector. However, blockchain refers to the distributed ledger technology, which constitutes an innovation in the information recording and sharing without a trusted third party. In this paper, blockchain and Distributed Ledger-based Improved Biomedical Security system (BDL-IBS) has been proposed to enhance the privacy and data security across healthcare applications. Further, our goal is to make it possible for patients to use the data to support their care and to provide strong consent systems for sharing data among different organizations and applications, since this includes managing and accessing a high amount of medical information, and this technology can maintain data to ensure reliability. Finally, results show that new blockchain-based digital platforms allow for fast, easy, and seamless interactions between data suppliers to enhance privacy and data security, including for patients themselves. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cyber Security and Data Privacy for Healthcare Industry)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Healthcare Data Breaches: Insights and Implications
Healthcare 2020, 8(2), 133; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare8020133 - 13 May 2020
Cited by 6
Abstract
The Internet of Medical Things, Smart Devices, Information Systems, and Cloud Services have led to a digital transformation of the healthcare industry. Digital healthcare services have paved the way for easier and more accessible treatment, thus making our lives far more comfortable. However, [...] Read more.
The Internet of Medical Things, Smart Devices, Information Systems, and Cloud Services have led to a digital transformation of the healthcare industry. Digital healthcare services have paved the way for easier and more accessible treatment, thus making our lives far more comfortable. However, the present day healthcare industry has also become the main victim of external as well as internal attacks. Data breaches are not just a concern and complication for security experts; they also affect clients, stakeholders, organizations, and businesses. Though the data breaches are of different types, their impact is almost always the same. This study provides insights into the various categories of data breaches faced by different organizations. The main objective is to do an in-depth analysis of healthcare data breaches and draw inferences from them, thereby using the findings to improve healthcare data confidentiality. The study found that hacking/IT incidents are the most prevalent forms of attack behind healthcare data breaches, followed by unauthorized internal disclosures. The frequency of healthcare data breaches, magnitude of exposed records, and financial losses due to breached records are increasing rapidly. Data from the healthcare industry is regarded as being highly valuable. This has become a major lure for the misappropriation and pilferage of healthcare data. Addressing this anomaly, the present study employs the simple moving average method and the simple exponential soothing method of time series analysis to examine the trend of healthcare data breaches and their cost. Of the two methods, the simple moving average method provided more reliable forecasting results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cyber Security and Data Privacy for Healthcare Industry)
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