Healthcare Information Security

HIPAA Technical Safeguards

Server hack leads to Montana Health Department investigation

by Patrick Ouellette

Just less than a year after a Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services server was hacked into, the department is alerting both public program clients and employees that their data was inappropriately accessed. After seeing some...

Ensuring HIPAA compliance among inpatient, outpatient docs

by Kyle Murphy, PhD

The continuum of care continues to expand and is forcing integrated delivery networks and health systems to reconsider their health data privacy and security practices after addressing the features unique to inpatient and outpatient clinical...

Data breach may affect all 62,000 UPMC employees

by Patrick Ouellette

Another healthcare data breach involving employees continues to grow, as the range of employees affected by the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) breach has grown from a reported 27,000 to potentially all 62,000 employees, according...

ProMedica Bay Park Hospital announces data breach

by Patrick Ouellette

ProMedica Bay Park Hospital of Oregon, OH is in the process of alerting more than 500 patients that their protected health information (PHI) had been breached after an internal employee inappropriately gained access to the information. According...

L.A. County boosts encryption policies after data breach

by Patrick Ouellette

Most often out of necessity, a healthcare organization that has just endured a data breach will comprehensively review its privacy and security procedures. The most recent example of these ramped-up efforts is the ongoing Los Angeles County Department...

HIPAA Security Rule requirements: Technical safeguard review

by Patrick Ouellette

Implementing the right blend of technology and policy is easier said than done for a healthcare organization, as there are myriad complications to each side of the security equation. But having a strong understanding of what the Department of...

UC Irvine alerts patients of keylogging malware incident

by Patrick Ouellette

University of California Irvine (UCI) announced last week that 1,813 students and some non-students were impacted by a data breach involving keylogging software malware. The UCI IT Security office learned that the breach had affected three UCI...

Secure healthcare communication in a mobile environment

by Andy Nieto

Mobile technology has undoubtedly advanced, as today’s smartphone possesses more computing power than NASA did when we first put man on the moon. Power without purpose, however, is chaos and privacy and security are not ancillary considerations...

Employees file class suit against UPMC following data breach

by Patrick Ouellette

Employees affected by the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) data breach have filed a class action lawsuit against UPMC and its payroll vendor, Ultimate Software Group. The suit says that UPMC and the vendor breached its duty to protect...

HHS deals out largest-ever $4.8M HIPAA violation settlement

by Patrick Ouellette

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced yesterday that it had handed out $4.8 million worth of HIPAA fines to New York and Presbyterian Hospital (NYP) and Columbia University (CU) after they submitted a joint breach report...

OCR dismisses Walgreens ‘Well Experience’ HIPAA complaint

by Patrick Ouellette

The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has officially completed its investigation into the Walgreens “Well Experience” program and dismissed the complaint filed by the activist group, Change to Win (CtW), after finding CtW’s patient privacy...

Molina Healthcare contractor mail error exposes patient data

by Patrick Ouellette

Molina Healthcare, a multi-state healthcare organization, reported on Friday that a postcard mailing error in March had resulted in 5,261 former members’ Social Security numbers being inadvertently exposed. According to the Albuquerque...

UMass Memorial Medical sends out patient data breach notices

by Patrick Ouellette

After taking nearly two months to flesh out a patient data breach involving inappropriate internal access, UMass Memorial Medical Center (UMMMC) of Worcester, Mass. announced this week that it had alerted more than 2,400 affected patients of...

Centura Health alerts 1,000 patients of phishing attack

by Patrick Ouellette

A data breach involving Mercy Regional Medical Center of Durango, Colo. exemplifies the stark reality that phishing attacks have become more complex and difficult for even the most shrewd of users to pick out. Mercy employees, according to the...

Boston Medical Center transcription service exposes PHI

by Patrick Ouellette

Once it learned that 15,000 patients’ data had been exposed on its transcription service vendor’s website, Boston Medical Center (BMC) fired MDF Transcription Services and has sent breach notification letters to patients. The website...

Health data breach roundup: Tufts Health Plan, Iowa DHS

by Patrick Ouellette

Data breaches of all different shapes, sizes and victims are being reported on an almost daily basis, so it can be difficult to stay up to date on the latest breach incidents. HealthITSecurity.com has compiled a list of the latest breaches down...

Coordinated Health data breach may impact 700 patients

by Patrick Ouellette

Coordinated Health reported this week that a data breach involving a stolen laptop belonging to an employee may have affected up to 700 patients. According to poconorecord.com, an employee in Bethlehem had left the laptop in their car and the...

Managing healthcare network security and BYOD needs

by Patrick Ouellette

Though there’s never a true winner in the “ease of use” v. security debate, coming to a happy medium between the two can present challenges for healthcare organizations. This is especially the case when dealing with the impact...

Reviewing Concentra Health and QCA HIPAA breach CAPs

by Patrick Ouellette

We learned yesterday that two HIPAA covered entities, Concentra Health Services and QCA Health Plan, had come to individual monetary agreements with the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) to settle HIPAA violations. Those resolutions included corrective...

Concentra, QCA Health Plan agree to HIPAA breach settlements

by Patrick Ouellette

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) sent out a release today detailing two entities’ settlements for HIPAA Privacy and Security Rule violations involving unencrypted laptop thefts. According to...

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