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FCW : April 30, 2014
Trending 6 April 30, 2014 FCW.COM of IT executives told McKinsey that new leadership would be the most important initiative to improve IT performance 28% The number of government data breach- es involving personally identi able infor- mation has more than doubled since 2009, and the Government Account- ability Of ce wants federal agencies to more closely adhere to existing security protocols to better protect people s data. According to a GAO report released in early April, breaches involving infor- mation such as tax data, census data, Social Security information and patient health information increased from 10,481 in 2009 to 25,566 in 2013, as reported to the U.S. Computer Emer- gency Readiness Team. GAO auditors said many agencies have struggled to address the eight required components of an informa- tion security program, speci cally in implementing security controls. Of the seven agencies evaluated, the Internal Revenue Service was the only one that consistently document- ed an assigned risk level and how that level was determined for PII-related data breaches. Only the Army and IRS documented the number of people affected by each incident. None of the seven agencies consistently offered credit monitoring to those affected by the incidents, nor did they document lessons learned. The report details key guidelines from the Of ce of Management and Budget and the National Institute of Standards and Technology for agencies to follow to improve their information security posture. The guidelines cover management practices, such as establishing a data breach response team and training employees on roles and responsibilities. There are also operational practices, such as preparing reports on suspected data breaches and submitting them to appropriate internal and external enti- ties, assessing the likely risk of harm and the level of impact of a suspected breach, offering assistance to affected individuals, and analyzing the agency s breach response. --- Mike Cipriano Data breach response leaves something to be desired TANK The federal government wants to carve out some areas of health IT that don t require oversight by the Food and Drug Administration while making sure medi- cal devices and other areas that directly affect patient health and safety remain subject to regulation. A new report from the FDA, the Fed- eral Communications Commission and the Of ce of the National Coordinator for Health IT proposes a risk-based approach to health IT that gives devel- opers the latitude to build computer applications for maintaining health records and capturing patient data with- out the long lead times and trials that accompany FDA approval. Under the proposed system, the FDA would focus on device functionality, including alarms that alert caregivers to changes in a patient s condition. The proposed approach is part of a larger strategy to provide more regula- tory clarity for the growing health IT industry and encourage rms to focus on standard setting, interoperability and best practices to improve data porta- bility and deliver care more ef ciently. The report recommends that indus- try establish methods of testing, validat- ing and certifying the interoperability of health IT systems and devices. The government also wants to see some veri cation of the quality and safety of health IT products. That function could be split between private-sector and gov- ernment entities, depending on wheth- er an assessment is critical to ensuring the safety and health of consumers, the report states. Finally, the agencies advocate the creation of a Health IT Safety Center, a public/private entity that would serve as a clearinghouse for best practices, governance and information sharing. --- Adam Mazmanian Feds propose streamlining health IT
April 15, 2014
May 15, 2014