As a small business, you may not be as up-to-date on technology like larger corporations, and that’s understandable. The reality is you still have to stay in compliance with guidelines and procedures, such as HIPAA. Just because your business is small doesn’t mean you’re exempt from HIPAA penalties, which can be substantial and devastating for small companies. Here are some tips to help ensure your small business complies with HIPAA requirements.
Understand the Terms
You need to fully understand the terms and what it takes to be HIPAA compliant. If you don’t have the time or resources to educate yourself, you can use an experienced IT support group to help. The reality is most small business owners don’t understand all the ins-and-outs of HIPAA compliance, so additional expertise is worth the cost to prevent a possible violation and penalty.
Encryption and Firewalls
Any basic IT support for a small and midsize business should include encryption and firewalls, at the very least. Encrypting all computers and files comes with a cost, but the cost of a HIPAA violation will be much higher if confidential information is compromised. Firewalls are essential for HIPAA compliance in order to prevent outside traffic from accessing your systems. Many small business owners believe cloud business solutions provide all the protection they need, but this shouldn’t be the only means of protection.
When in Doubt, Take the Safe Road
Even small actions, such as allowing an employee or anyone else access an unlocked computer with confidential information, could be a HIPAA violation. Sending emails with confidential information could also be problematic if the information is not encrypted or sent via secure networks. You may never know when information will get into the wrong hands, so it’s better to be extra cautious.
Use Managed IT Support Services
In addition to backup solutions for small businesses, IT support services can ensure your company stays HIPAA compliant. Most small business owners simply don’t have the time or resources to run the IT department themselves or hire an in-house IT professional. Managed IT support services are the best of both worlds because a business owner can have peace of mind without the financial burden of an in-house staff.
Single Point of Contact provides IT support for small and midsize businesses across the country. Be safe when it comes to HIPAA compliance and contact us for a consultation.