Monthly Archives: May 2016

Americans Still Unprepared to Share Health Information Online, Pew Reports

Americans Still Unprepared to Share Health Information Online, Pew Reports

Although healthcare technology and EHR management tools are improving in security, a new survey by Pew found that Americans are still unprepared to share their health information online.

Americans Still Unprepared to Share Health Information Online, Pew Reports

Pew’s research showed that American tolerance for healthcare data breaches is low—just over half of Americans surveyed felt that doctors should use health information websites to manage patient records, citing privacy concerns as the biggest drawback. Another 20 percent of respondents said their comfort with online sharing would depend on the scenario, and 26 percent felt that accessing online health information was unacceptable.

Respondents cited various reasons for their aversion to online record sharing, but each reason speaks to a larger trend in the healthcare world—patients strongly safeguard their own information, and must trust the clinicians with whom they share information.

Privacy is Case-by-Case

Throughout Pew’s survey, many respondents agreed on one point: their comfort with sharing data depended on the unique circumstances of each medical situation. Before sharing their information online, respondents wanted to know:

  • Do I trust this clinic?
  • How will they store the data?
  • How will the data be used?
  • Is my data secure?

Respondents also claimed that the record type stored made a difference in their comfort level. Patients were comfortable with sharing surface level information, such as appointment scheduling or providing basic personal details. However, they complained about having their health information and medical outcomes exposed, which they felt could negatively affect their ability to secure credit, purchase insurance, or find jobs.

“My health records are confidential,” one respondent claimed. “I don’t want them in the hands of someone unscrupulous or marketing companies possibly trying to recommend a drug or something based on a condition I may have.”

Building Trust

Despite the reluctance to share information online, respondents agreed that their personal relationship with that clinic factored into their decision to share data. If they trusted the organization, they were more open to online health records.

Clinicians must remember this as they move towards electronic health records. Although the surge in data breaches over the past few years has painted digital healthcare management in a bad light, clinics still have options to protect themselves. Choosing the right data security options for enterprise health platforms will help prevent data loss, build trust with patients, and ensure that digital records are just as secure as paper files.

Desh Urs iBridge LLC

Written by Desh Urs

Desh Urs brings more than 20 years of entrepreneurial, start-up and Global 500 corporate experience in sales, marketing, and general management to the customers of iBridge. He has led sales organizations as SVP at Qsent, Inc. and VP at Acxiom Corporation, and has focused on the usage of data in data distribution, direct marketing, fraud prevention, and law enforcement.

As a Vice President of Global Sales, Services, and Marketing at Silicon Graphics, Inc., Urs managed engineering and non-engineering functions, developing solutions in sciences, telecommunications, manufacturing, media, business, and defense intelligence, for companies with revenues of several billion dollars. During his tenure as Vice President at Think Tools AG and Brio Technology, Inc., he ran business development and alliances providing solutions in Business Intelligence and Decisions Cycle Management to Global 100 corporations worldwide. In the late 1980s, Urs founded Indus Systems, Inc., which he profitably sold to a systems integration company.

Urs serves on several Advisory Boards, as well as many company Boards, in the United States and India.

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Privacy Survey Highlights the Poor State of Data Security

Privacy Survey Highlights the Poor State of Data Security

Risk management remains a priority for legal firms across the world, but new research is showing just how unprepared many industries are to take on the challenge.

Privacy Survey Highlights the Poor State of Data Security

Guidance Software performed a data risk and privacy survey on a variety of industries, including government firms, IT industries, and financial services. The respondents, primarily security executives and security analysts, shed light on the current state of information security and how they felt security should be handled moving forward:

  • 48 percent reported feeling unprepared to identify and protect sensitive information from data breaches, mishandled devices, or human error.
  • Despite this lack of confidence, 46 percent believe that protecting sensitive data is a top priority.

How data security should be handled was addressed.

  • 69 percent feel that it’s important to systematically delete obsolete or outdated information.
  • 55 percent are most worried about private or sensitive data residing on servers or endpoints.
  • Over 37 percent feel that a risk management solution for regulatory and policy compliance is important for data security.

Security Solutions

With so many respondents reporting discontent with the current state of data security, it makes sense that legal firms are hungry for solutions.

Risk management software lets organizations understand the flow of sensitive data, from the time of creation to its eventual endpoint throughout the workflows of each industry. These workflows include file creation, email sharing, transmission to multiple devices, and storage in databases. Without dedicated data management software, each of these points of contact creates multiple vulnerabilities that can be exploited.

Enterprise software protects data throughout every step of its use and ensures that information practices comply with external regulatory bodies, such as HIPAA.

Building a Culture of Security

Software data security through risk management platforms is the first step of total information governance. To ensure true data security, the most significant security variable present in any enterprise must be addressed—employees.

According to IBM’s 2014 Cyber Security Intelligence Index, 95 percent of all security incidents involve human error. Legal firms must mitigate employee mishandling of information by creating protocols governing data use. Across email, mobile device communications, and file transfers on external storage systems, employees must follow defined rules that dictate how they handle sensitive data.

The effort required to implement these protocols will be substantial at first, but security practices can be refined over time to better align with the workflows of each organization. This will ensure that efficiency isn’t lost while trying to secure data. When legal firms have a strong culture of security backed by risk management software solutions, data breaches and information loss will become concerns of the past.

Dean Van Dyke iBridge LLC

Written by Dean Van Dyke, Vice President, Business Process Optimization

Dean Van Dyke is the Vice President of Business Process Optimization for iBridge. He brings more than 18 years of customer relations, business process outsourcing, lean six sigma, program/project management, records management, manufacturing, and vendor management experience to iBridge. Mr. Van Dyke was the former head of Microsoft’s corporate records and information management team and served honorably for over fourteen years in the U.S. Navy and Army National Guard. He received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of South Dakota and his Master’s in Business Administration from Colorado Technical University.

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Mobile Messaging Apps: Is the Legal World Ready?

Mobile Messaging Apps: Is the Legal World Ready?

Messaging applications have entered the workflows of many legal firms due to the enhanced productivity and communication options they offer.Mobile Messaging Apps: Is the Legal World Ready?

However, a recent study by Infinite Convergence Solutions on mobile messaging for legal firms painted a grim picture of the current state of legal messaging. Results of the study showed that:

  • Only 22 percent of respondents used mobile messaging compared to 69 percent who used email.
  • Usage rates of mobile messaging are relatively low—when surveyed on the reasons why, 30 percent of respondents claimed to prefer sending emails or making calls, 23 percent didn’t enjoy the lack of paper trail present in current mobile messaging solutions, 30 percent weren’t authorized to use mobile messaging by their company, and three percent didn’t feel that mobile messaging was secure enough to use.

These findings highlight the biggest drawback of mobile messaging—messaging applications aren’t equipped with necessary user features and are ill-suited to handle secure business data. Though mobile messaging provides more extensive communication options among legal teams, firms have a long way to go before messaging applications enter the legal mainstream.

Education is Key

To address the growing need for mobile messaging security, managers must make staff education a priority. Legal firms send mixed messages on safe mobile messaging in the workplace; some firms disallow it altogether and some allow it while not understanding the regulatory obligations compromised by its use.

In response, some firms block all messaging applications outright, but this strategy reduces productivity and limits communication flexibility for staff members. Instead of taking draconian policies against mobile messaging, firms should establish protocols and frameworks to govern its use. Many issues surrounding messaging privacy relate to staff members unknowingly revealing sensitive information—establishing a culture of stronger privacy will lead to better data security across all communication channels.

Secure Messaging Options

Education is the first step, but it’s not the only measure legal firms must take. Secure enterprise messaging options are necessary for legal firms wanting to protect privileged data while providing communication options for its employees. Additional research from the above study found that 44 percent of companies don’t use an official mobile messaging platform.

Implementing secure, regulatory-compliant communication channels allow legal firms to release themselves from the burden of mobile messaging data security. Enterprise-specific messaging platforms provide guaranteed compliance without sacrificing productivity.

Dean Van Dyke iBridge LLC

Written by Dean Van Dyke, Vice President, Business Process Optimization

Dean Van Dyke is the Vice President of Business Process Optimization for iBridge. He brings more than 18 years of customer relations, business process outsourcing, lean six sigma, program/project management, records management, manufacturing, and vendor management experience to iBridge. Mr. Van Dyke was the former head of Microsoft’s corporate records and information management team and served honorably for over fourteen years in the U.S. Navy and Army National Guard. He received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of South Dakota and his Master’s in Business Administration from Colorado Technical University.

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5 Healthcare Imperatives that Speak to the Need for Personalization

5 Healthcare Imperatives that Speak to the Need for Personalization

Patient expectations are changing fast in the healthcare world.

A recent report by EMC showed that technology has greatly influenced patient expectations over the past few years:

  • 47 percent want more “personalized” experiences
  • Over 50 percent want faster access to services
  • On top of that, 45 percent expect 24/7 access and connectivity to services
  • 42 percent want access on a wider range of devices than they currently have

Given the results of this survey and others like it, there are several healthcare imperatives that providers must understand when creating a more accessible and personalized patient experience:

1. Predict New Opportunities

Greater healthcare personalization involves identifying areas where patients need care the most. 5 Healthcare Imperatives that Speak to the Need for PersonalizationValue-based care and patient-centered medical homecare are a few examples of areas where service providers can reach out to patients outside of the traditional healthcare setting. To better predict these opportunities, providers must get involved with data studies and leverage this information in pilot programs. These test programs provide valuable information about network efficiency and how customers respond to each care initiative.

2. Promote Transparency

Transparency of treatment options, outcomes, and medical data is essential for personalization. The best patient outcomes stem from collaborations between patient and provider; transparency helps establish trust and lets patients take an active role in their care. The easiest way to personalize healthcare is to involve patients in the decision-making process.

3. Support Innovation

Healthcare providers must support innovation any way they can. This involves contributing to clinical research studies, integrating new technologies to support productivity, and leveraging the omnipresent access of the Internet to provide each patient better control over their data. As digital healthcare strategies become more tech-centric, providers must build internal cultures that promote innovation and growth.

4. Connect with Your Customers

Dave Diamond, the CTO of EMC, spoke on the value of patient interaction for greater personalization:

“The key theme is to know your customer,” said Diamond. “Go to your customer, the patient and engage them. Go with consumer-direct products like every other industry has. In the post-meaningful use world – providers are digitized like other industries.”

Providers must prioritize one-on-one interactions with patients to learn what values drive their behavior.

5. Provide Continual Access

The above EMC report highlighted the importance of real-time access of health services. Patients these days want to be able to connect to the services they want, through whatever devices they have on hand. Providers must understand this and use innovative channels and applications to create this access. Telemedicine, mobile health, and online web portals can all contribute to an infrastructure of patient connectivity.

Desh Urs iBridge LLC

Written by Desh Urs

Desh Urs brings more than 20 years of entrepreneurial, start-up and Global 500 corporate experience in sales, marketing, and general management to the customers of iBridge. He has led sales organizations as SVP at Qsent, Inc. and VP at Acxiom Corporation, and has focused on the usage of data in data distribution, direct marketing, fraud prevention, and law enforcement.

As a Vice President of Global Sales, Services, and Marketing at Silicon Graphics, Inc., Urs managed engineering and non-engineering functions, developing solutions in sciences, telecommunications, manufacturing, media, business, and defense intelligence, for companies with revenues of several billion dollars. During his tenure as Vice President at Think Tools AG and Brio Technology, Inc., he ran business development and alliances providing solutions in Business Intelligence and Decisions Cycle Management to Global 100 corporations worldwide. In the late 1980s, Urs founded Indus Systems, Inc., which he profitably sold to a systems integration company.

Urs serves on several Advisory Boards, as well as many company Boards, in the United States and India.

iBridge Newsletter7 Things About Medical Identity Theft Healthcare Executives Need to Know

6 Considerations for Your Email Security Solution

6 Considerations for Your Email Security Solution

With email still holding a prominent place in the world of communication, businesses can’t afford to take email security lightly. Basic encryption is essential, but the wealth of services available for email security offer a wide range of benefits beyond basic features.

6 Considerations for Your Email Security Solution

Keep these six considerations in mind before purchasing email security software:

1. Outlook Encryption

Microsoft Outlook includes a basic encryption feature, but most businesses find this security method to be onerous. Both parties must have the public key certificate to encrypt and decrypt messages, which is time-consuming when applied to large enterprises.

2. Recipient and File Parameters

For maximum efficiency, your email security software shouldn’t require the recipient to download their own version of your software. In addition, the chosen solution must accommodate the largest files your enterprise may send. Both will help reduce the chance that users will be forced to choose less secure transfer methods to work around software limitations.

3. Security Features

The goal of all encryption software is security, but not all email security solutions are created equal.

Although software that includes multiple verification methods, policy-based encryption, and SSA 16 Type II certifications are the standard, you must ensure the included features offer protection for both emails in motion and emails at rest. Email providers should encrypt emails to keep them secure if an interception occurs during transfer. On the storage side, solutions should offer storage in company-owned infrastructure that limits access to encryption keys.

4. The User Experience

While quality email solutions must first and foremost secure data, they must also prioritize the user experience.

On the sender side, the encryption process should be simple—one-click encryption, email tracking, and receipt notices are essential. Making this process easy increases adoption rates across your enterprise. For email recipients, attachment retrieval should be simple and without the need for additional downloads. Complexity and cumbersome processes reduce adoption and frustrate users while a straightforward user experience accelerates building a corporate culture of security.

5. Mobile Integration and Adaptability

The email solution should be flexible and ideally integrate with the programs users are already familiar with. Most security programs have mobile applications that have secure portal access via your Internet browser. With more business conducted on mobile devices these days, mobile email security is essential.

6. Administrative Customization

Once you’ve researched the must-have security features, your final choice may come down to how customizable you want your email security system to be. Competitive encryption solutions offer advanced options to tailor the email platform to each business or individual user. Digital signatures, automated messaging, or adding your brand logo are all bonus features that can give your security solution an edge. Identify and deploy an email solution, which allows for easy customization, one-click ability to secure communication and claw back and true traceability and intelligence.

Dean Van Dyke iBridge LLC

Written by Dean Van Dyke, Vice President, Business Process Optimization

Dean Van Dyke is the Vice President of Business Process Optimization for iBridge. He brings more than 18 years of customer relations, business process outsourcing, lean six sigma, program/project management, records management, manufacturing, and vendor management experience to iBridge. Mr. Van Dyke was the former head of Microsoft’s corporate records and information management team and served honorably for over fourteen years in the U.S. Navy and Army National Guard. He received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of South Dakota and his Master’s in Business Administration from Colorado Technical University.

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