When it comes to dealing with your customers’ sensitive health or personal information, we cannot overstate the importance of compliance and security. If you are responsible for your patients’ medical and healthcare information, the responsibility to protect this data rests on your shoulders.
The Impact on Your Customers
The Washington Post reported that, between 2009 and 2015, there were 1,100 individual breaches that took place at insurance data-handling centers, compromising healthcare information for over 120 million people. These breaches took place for a variety of reasons and, in most cases, resulted in hackers gaining access to customer names, dates of birth, social security numbers, addresses and more. This information in the hands of criminals has the potential for severe consequences.
The personal and healthcare data your organization handles and stores is more valuable to hackers and fraudsters than credit card and banking information. Unlike credit card data, healthcare and personal data are more difficult, if not impossible, to change. As a result, this data has a higher resale value on the black market for criminals who want to steal identities, hack into accounts, and perform other malicious activities.
While credit card fraud is a hassle, the merchants and credit card companies bear ultimate responsibility. When medical data is hacked and made public, the damage can be irreversible. A medical condition made public can create challenges for a victim who is trying to keep a job and maintain personal and business relationships. Your patients and customers count on you to protect their information.
The Impact on Your Organization
Healthcare Finance News explains that HIPAA can slap you with massive fines, depending on the severity of a breach. They explain further that it can take up to three years for an organization to receive notification of a fine, but that it can cost up to $50,000 per violation. In addition to paying a fine, your organization will likely undergo an investigation from the Office of Civil Rights, not only adding to the financial cost, but also jeopardizing your credibility and reputation
Precautions to Take
Healthcare Finance News offers these simple suggestions to better protect sensitive medical data:
1. Conduct enterprise-wide risk assessments versus simply doing vulnerability analyses. Larger assessments catch more problem areas.
2. Know exactly where your customer data is stored at any given time. You should be able to recite this information when asked.
3. Be thorough when training staff. Help employees understand all the risks and necessary precautions to protect sensitive data. Make sure they understand all policies and procedures before they begin handling customer data.
4. Know your vendors and how they handle data. Be aware of third party vendors your organization uses, with a focus on how they store and handle sensitive data. You are only as strong as your weakest link.
5. Boost your infrastructure and CRM software with cyber security measures that protect sensitive data.
Many organizations in the healthcare and insurance sectors have benefitted from adding KomBea solutions (SecureCall and ExactCall) to their existing CRM platform. These solutions increase both compliance and security.
About SecureCall and ExactCall Solutions
If your Contact Center regularly collects payment or identifying information over the phone, SecureCall offers a unique solution to protect your organization against hacking and fraud. With SecureCall, your customers enter their information using their phone keypad or via a SMS interface. SecureCall allows you to collect HIPAA data without agents ever seeing or hearing the information, greatly reducing risk. Visit our website to watch a video demonstration of SecureCall in action.
ExactCall enables contact centers to achieve 100% compliance on every call. ExactCall uses pre-recorded audio or an SMS interface to deliver disclosures, healthcare details, or other required information with perfect consistency and compliance. ExactCall is customizable to your organization’s needs.
Contact us to request a demo of our contact center solutions.