More physicians, and other healthcare professionals and facilities, today are using mobile devices to store, send and receive health information. As with other electronic devices, security is an ongoing concern. Healthcare providers need to be sure they are not unknowingly allowing unauthorized access to protected health information. To prevent this, there are a number of things you can do.
The first thing you can do to protect the privacy and security of the information and communication of your mobile device is to configure it so that a password or some other form of authentication is required in order to use the device.
Also, make sure you have some kind of encryption software on your device. Some devices already have encryption software installed, but with others you need to buy the software.
There is also software that enables you to remotely erase data on your device and to disable the device from a distance. You can lock it remotely as well.
To maintain security on your mobile device you need to be very careful about file sharing applications. This is software that enables you to share information with other users, allowing them to connect to your system. It also, however, increases the risks of an unauthorized person accessing your information. The most secure course of action in this case is to not use file sharing software at all.
Another way to maintain security on a mobile device is to install a firewall. These have become relatively common. They are software applications that block certain connections based on a set of pre-established guidelines.
As with other devices, such as PCs, laptops and tablets, there is also security software available for mobile devices that disables malware, computer viruses and spyware. It is also important to make sure your computer security software is as current as possible. Often, security programs update themselves automatically, but you as the user need to make sure your protection programs are as up to date as possible. New viruses and spyware are invented all the time.
Be careful when you download applications to your mobile device. Make sure the place you are getting them from is known to you and is a trusted vendor. Again, you might be inadvertently downloading spyware or some other malicious program if you don’t know who is producing the application.
Public Wi-Fi networks are another way that the security and privacy of your information can be breached. When you connect to such a network, it may be possible for unauthorized people to see the information you are sending. So, either don’t use such a network to send protected health information, or make sure it has been encrypted before you do.
Finally, if you are planning to discard your mobile device, make sure you delete all of the information on it before you get rid of it.
Morgan Hunter Healthcare can help your hospital/healthcare facility stay abreast of the latest developments in HIT and source, vet and place professionals who have the up-to-the-minute healthcare IT technology your facility needs. Contact us today to learn more about Morgan Hunter Healthcare!