The deadline for complying with revises HIPAA guidelines is approaching.

Time running out for evaluating offsite backup providers under HIPAA requirements

Stephen Perkins

Healthcare providers still working to move their patient records to the cloud are running out of time to assess offsite backup partners as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act compliance deadline draws near.

The act gives dentists, doctors and other medical professionals until Sept. 23 to move patient records to online data backup  and comply with new patient data storage requirements. Failure to comply with the law could result in steep fines of more than $1 million for both the healthcare provider and the data storage partner.

The process of finding the right private, public or hybrid cloud solution should include an evaluation process that takes a structured approach to finding a vendor, REA Group technology services manager Damian Fasciani said, according to ZDNet contributor Tim Lohman. Doing research and finding the right questions to ask can help medical professionals get the answers they need regarding security and other factors.

"Our due diligence model covers a few key areas, beginning with security," Fasciani stated. "That's everything to do with data integrity, security of our infrastructure, data encryption, where data is held, how backups are executed and what third-party vendors a cloud vendor relies on to provide the services back to us."

One service that can help medical professionals learn more about remote backup is the Cloud Security Alliance. The group aims to promote security within cloud computing and information about how it can be used to provide security for all forms of computing. Among the information offered on the alliance's website is a slideshow overview of changes mandated by the HIPAA updates. The presentation includes information about penalties and the steps that must be taken following a data storage security breach to help medical professionals assess their offsite storage options and make the right choice for their practice.

Categories: Cloud Backup, Data Compliance, Data Protection, Online Backup