This article about the “Wall of Shame” hitting a new milestone is a reminder to all employers to remain diligent in preventing data breaches and protecting health information. The wall is the HIPAA Breach Reporting Tool website maintained by the Department of Health and Human Services. The numbers show a surge of individuals impacted by data breaches in recent years, as healthcare becomes a major target for hackers.
To protect themselves in the event of a data breach, employer plan sponsors should:
- Confirm they have a current business associate agreement with each vendor that handles protected health information on their behalf.
- Verify that these business associates have the appropriate security controls in place. Some benefits professionals find it helpful to involve their own IT security experts in these conversations.
- Ask business associates about the new security measures they are putting in place to prevent breaches for individual members.
Don’t forget that employers very likely have a fiduciary duty to find another vendor, should they experience multiple data breaches with a business associate!
Go to full article: www.databreachtoday.com