Ongoing and ubiquitous healthcare cybersecurity attacks in the U.S. continue to exacerbate concerns from medical professionals and patients about the current state of the industry.

This opens up deeper questions and concerns about where the cyber attacks are occurring, how significant the attacks are, etc.

It’s a nationwide problem: About half of states and Washington, D.C., saw more than 1 in 10 of their residents directly affected by unauthorized access to their health information, according to the analysis, raising significant privacy and security concerns. And hacking accounted for more than 80 percent of all such breaches last year — up from 35 percent in 2016.

Health care cybersecurity experts say a rise in the hacking of financially lucrative health information and ransomware, more awareness of threats and thus increased reporting, the turn to remote work and health care’s digital pivot are all behind the swell. Health care information is highly coveted by hackers, who can sell the data on the dark web or use it fraudulently, including false Medicare claims and identity theft.

“Unfortunately, the industry is pretty much easy pickings, and they’re hitting it because they’re getting paid,” said Mac McMillan, CEO of cybersecurity company CynergisTek. “It’s [not] gonna slow down until we either get more serious about stopping it, or blocking it, or being more effective at it. From the cybercriminals’ perspective, they’re being successful, they’re getting paid; why would they stop?”

Read the full story at Politico.