Over the years cyber-crimes have been on the rise and the trend may not stop soon unless something happens that ultimately turns the table on hackers. Considering we are not there yet, there are security measures in place to help businesses and organizations stay safe.
With the use of Electronic Health Records to store patient’s medical data, the vulnerability of healthcare facilities to cyber-attacks is a real concern. The security and privacy requirements of HIPAA not only target medical providers but any other entity in charge of handling healthcare data. Below are four things you can implement to help your practice stay compliant to the security and privacy requirements of HIPAA:
SECURE IN-HOUSE DATA TRANSFERS
Having patient information electronically available to anyone in the facility can result in damages and lawsuits. The worst part is, it is almost impossible to keep track of data transfers especially data copied into personal devices. There are software programs that keep company endpoints secure; this ensures that only authorized people can access medical records.
IMPLEMENT FIREWALLS AND WEB FILTERING
As much as the internet can be convenient, especially to health facilities, it is also full of viruses and malware. A few minutes of careless browsing and downloading of files could result into considerable damage. A single infected file is enough to corrupt or wipe a facility’s system clean. To keep your facility safe, you can outsource IT services and install internet restrictions.
AUTOMATICALLY UPDATE SOFTWARE
Tech advancements are fast-paced. What seems necessary today might not be tomorrow. Software companies are always patching their services to stay up-to-date, which is precisely what your facility should stay on top of to avoid vulnerabilities. As a dental or medical practice, you may not keep track of critical security updates; to prevent this, it is crucial to ensure that your systems are configured to update automatically.
SET UP SECURITY GUIDELINES
One of the most effective methods of ensuring your facility’s security is to set up security guidelines that your staff easily understands and abides by. Educate your staff on safety measures when using the internet, for instance, using secure passwords and logging out every time they visit private pages and databases.
You can implement the above tips among others to help you keep your facility secure and pass HIPAA Security risk assessment.
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