Mobile Data Security a Big Concern

Do you use a laptop that contains patient information? Do you have a list of your patients with their telephone numbers, email addresses and appointment schedule in your smart phone? Are those devices encrypted? The number of mobile devices we utilize to conduct our businesses has expanded beyond belief. What can we do to make […]

Will Your Organization Weather a Storm…or Other Catastrophe?

Superstorm Sandy has had major impact on the lives of large numbers of our fellow Americans and colleagues who live in the Northeast U.S. The loss of life, property, and access to conveniences like electricity, warm showers, and transportation has made clear how vulnerable we are to the impacts of catastrophic events. Sandy has also […]

PHI Thieves Are Usually After Financial Information

Now that many physicians and other healthcare organizations are purchasing and utilizing EMRs, they seem to be focused on safeguarding the clinical Protected Health Information (PHI) of their patients. In the process, some are forgetting to protect patient financial information even though it is also PHI. The FierceHealthIT newsletter of October 24, 2012 indicates that […]

Ongoing HIPAA Care: What is your plan?

Here at SOS Software, we have been in an ongoing process to develop, maintain, and implement detailed policies and procedures to assure that we are doing everything possible to act as responsible Business Associates to our Covered Entity customers. We have been holding monthly training for our staff in which we all take a pre-test, […]

UCLA and WellPoint Fined for Data Breaches

I am sure many of you remember the reports dating back to 2005 that celebrity patient files were being viewed by casual lookers…employees who had access to the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) Health System electronic medical record (EMR) but who had no legitimate reason to view those records. Well, the Department of […]

Security and Backup: Yes…backup, again!

Once a month, on average, our technical support specialists are confronted with a customer whose database has become corrupted because of some hardware issue and who has no usable backup. After last week’s adventure, I decided I would again write about backup. Then, last night, I saw a discussion on a Psychology and Technology listserv that included […]

Data Security, Backup, and the HITECH Law

A question on one of the psychology listservs I follow got me thinking, yet again, about data security…and backup. The writer asked about the proper procedures to follow when patient psychotherapy treatment records are permanently lost. The question pertained to how the counselor in question should respond to the loss of all of their patient […]

Are your passwords HIPAA secure?

Standard advice for securing computer systems is to require users to change passwords frequently. Something about this recommendation has always bothered me, but I never really thought it through. A current blog posting at Healthcare Informatics by Dale Sanders really hits the nail on the head. He points out that these change-passwords-frequently policies actually undercut password security […]