HIPAA compliant cloud hosting is a cost-effective way for healthcare companies and their business associates to manage increasingly complex IT systems. At the same time, the threat of compliance failures are all too real. What's actually best for your business?
The government has supplied millions of dollars in incentives to encourage companies to implement and use electronic health records. At the same time, consumer demand for control of their personal health data is increasing. Meanwhile, consumers and businesses alike expect to be able to access data remotely. Indeed, it's almost becoming unrealistic to expect a company to function efficiently with their employees chained to an immobile desktop PC. Cloud computing makes data access easy – from anywhere.
However, with hackers, internet spying, and security failures making headlines, cloud computing may seem too risky for regulated companies to pursue. When you're facing the potential for huge losses if a breach occurs, migrating to the cloud may seem an unnecessary risk.
Dig into the numbers a little bit, though, and you'll see that HIPAA compliant hosting can actually protect you from some of the most common threats to your data.
What's the biggest threat?
Take a look at the reportable breaches listed by HHS. Nearly three-fourths of the affected individuals had their data compromised due to theft or loss. The largest reported breach was due to lost backup tapes, and the second largest due to stolen laptops. Even breaches of less than 500 individuals can cost a company tens of thousands of dollars, as in the case of the Hospice of North Idaho, who shelled out $50,000 after a laptop was stolen in Jan 2013.
HIPAA compliant cloud hosting dramatically reduces the chances of this type of breach. Minimally, you'll reduce the risk of theft, since you'll have access controls for your data, rigorous site security and continuous monitoring. Backups are encrypted, and stored at a secure site (ideally not on tape), with physical and technical security measures in place.
You can reduce the risk even further by implementing policies and procedures to make sure your data stays where it belongs - behind your provider's secure firewall, and not stored on local hard drives or removable media that are so easily lost or stolen. A truly HIPAA compliant cloud system, with the right controls, can protect you from some of the biggest threats to data security.
Fully Compliant Health IT
To really protect your ePHI, look for a partner that specializes in HIPAA compliant hosting. Their focus is providing secure, compliant systems that stay updated to cope with emerging threats and evolving technology. If you're handling electronic PHI, then a HIPAA compliant data center, committed solely to providing secure IT infrastructure and systems management to regulated companies, is very likely going to do this better than your in-house IT. With an EHNAC accreditation, you can be assured that your provider is fully HIPAA compliant.
Stay Protected with HIPAA Compliant Hosting
ByteGrid has the first data center fully validated to meet HIPAA regulations. Compliant hosting is what we do. Our full time technical and compliance staff are committed to providing secure data systems. We do so much more than that, too – we've implemented all of the supporting processes to ensure complete compliance to current HIPAA regulations, and our EHNAC accreditation proves that.
We're here to help you achieve a fully compliant health IT system. Contact us today to protect your data with a HIPAA compliant cloud.