Americans want stronger privacy over easier access to health data

In a welcome
mentality shift, Americans are starting to put their privacy first and
convenience second when it comes to their health data, according to a study by America’s
Health Insurance Plans (AHIP).

Most surveys
asking people about their experience accessing services and apps online conclude
that people value convenience more than privacy or security. But, according to
one recent study, that is starting to change – at least when it comes to
Americans and their health records.

Patients feel they deserve better access to personalized, actionable healthcare information to help them to make more informed decisions, but it should not drive up health care costs or compromise the privacy of their personal health data, according to a nationwide poll of patients and consumers from Morning Consult, conducted on behalf of America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP).

62% of respondents
said they were willing to forego easier access to their health information if
their data and privacy were protected better in return. This marks an important
mentality shift for consumers, likely as a result of the increasing number of
news reports about data breaches at healthcare providers.

As avid Bitdefender blog readers know, cybercrooks value health records more than any other type of data stolen in a breach. Hackers attack healthcare units and their service providers with data-stealing malware – sometimes topping it off with data-destroying ransomware – because they can fetch a handsome dollar by selling the data to fraudsters on the Dark Web. Americans have apparently been reading the news about these incidents, as 90% of respondents reported they want technology companies held to the same high standard and scrutiny as health insurance providers when it comes to protecting their information.

82% of respondents
also said they want their healthcare information delivered in a way that is
more concise and simpler to understand.

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