Cybercrime , Endpoint Security , Fraud Management & Cybercrime

HHS Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan Describes Cyber Initiative

In-Depth Interview Outlines Goals of Health Sector Cybersecurity Coordination Center
HHS Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan Describes Cyber Initiative
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan

So what's the mission of the newly launched Department of Health and Human Services' new Health Sector Cybersecurity Coordination Center and how will it function? HHS Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan explains the initiative and addresses top healthcare sector cybersecurity challenges in this in-depth interview with Information Security Media Group.

The new "HC3" replaces the Healthcare Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center, or HCCIC, which HHS launched in 2017.

"We see that there are always rising risks within the healthcare sector for cyberattacks, and we needed to create a larger center at HHS ... dedicated to protecting the healthcare sector from the ever-increasing threats coming," Hargan says.

The HC3's top priorities include taking a "collective approach" to cyber risks in the healthcare sector, working with healthcare industry cyber threat information sharing organizations, including the Health Information Security and Analysis Center and HITRUST, as well as with the Department of Homeland Security, he says.

The HC3 has a dedicated team that "continuously learns what the threats are that are arising and can communicate to healthcare organizations and law enforcement, to the intelligence community and to our partners in a wide variety of areas," he says.

In the interview (see audio link below photo), Hargan also discusses:

  • How HC3 with potentially work with the proposed new Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency;
  • How HC3 with collaborate with information sharing and analysis organizations, and how threat information will be shared with healthcare organizations;
  • Why he sees the internet of things and connected medical devices as posing the most significant cyber challenges facing the healthcare sector.

Before being sworn in as deputy secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services in October 2017, Hargan, an attorney, worked at the law firm Greenberg Traurig in its health and Food and Drug Administration business department. There, he focused his practice on transactions, healthcare regulations and government relations. Hargan represented investors, companies and individuals in healthcare investments and issues across the entire sector.

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