Meeting compliance standards is tricky to say the least. Doing so, however, is especially crucial for IT. For this reason, IT leaders choose VDI and the Cloud to deliver a cutting-edge work experience to end users. Doing so helps IT ensure on-going compliance with both company policy and various laws. Not doing so, however, means facing serious legal ramifications. This is especially true when it comes to HIPAA, PCI DSS and GDPR compliance laws.
*Note: the following is meant to help give you a good overview of the challenges facing IT in navigating laws and regulations. It is not intended to be strictly legal advice, but rather a helpful resource for IT leaders.
What is HIPAA?
HIPAA stands for the Healthcare Insurance and Portability and Accountability Act passed by the United States Congress in 1996. HIPAA regulates how confidential patient healthcare information can be used. Essentially, HIPAA mandates that healthcare IT make all handling of electronic confidential data safe and secure.
Of course, this does not come without its fair share of challenges. After all, it is one thing to ensure data is accessed and processed securely. It’s another to enable this in a fast paced, life or death scenario that healthcare providers face every day on the hospital floor.
What is GDPR?
The General Data Protection Regulation is technically a EU-based law, but it has made big waves in the States as well. In its wake, companies and organizations rushed to update how they process private information about individuals, customers and employees. Not only is it necessary for businesses functioning in Europe to comply with, it raises the standard for how data should be handled by all.
Another crucial data protection regulation that IT must abide by is the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard. It’s the main compliance standard that any company handling credit card and payment information must follow.
Although the list of additional compliance standards continues on, we’ll focus on these three main ones for now, as they are the ones the IT leaders we work with face the most frequently.
Compliance is Not Just About the Endpoints
When it comes to meeting the requirements of these three regulations, the challenge encompasses more than just the endpoints themselves. For this reason, organization and IT leaders will need a multifaceted approach to become and remain in compliance. Part of this might mean bringing in outside help to manage the process. Some rules, however, apply more directly to your endpoints than others.
Endpoint Compliance for HIPAA
Ensuring secure handling of electronic patient information takes incredible complexity and interchangeable parts working smoothly together in real time to function solidly. Of course, the endpoints your healthcare providers actually log into factor into the equation. Lets examine what’s expected of endpoints in order to be HIPAA compliant.
Ever since 2003, it’s been necessary that healthcare organizations establish processes that protect confidential health information. Under this rule, health organizations, including: health plan providers, healthcare clearinghouses, and additional electronic transactions have to have certain safeguards in place that protect patient healthcare information. Under this established rule, patients can request their information for review, and request corrections be made. A few additional things that this rule establishes is that organizations that fall under its purview must deliver the requested information within 30 days of the request being made.
Another major part of HIPAA revolves around security. By setting standards and safeguards organizations must take, everyone can rest assured that their healthcare data remains confidential and secure. This applies to the kind of technology used. It also sets parameters for how electronic patient information can be accessed in regards to its location. Lastly, administers must also have procedures in place to ensure organizational compliance. In this way, security is built into every level of your endpoint deployment.
The third rule that applies to how IT enables HIPAA compliance across their entire endpoint deployment. This basically holds organizations accountable in the event there’s a major breach into patient information, requiring covered healthcare organizations to notify people when a massive breach has occurred.
Organizations that fail to secure patient information on endpoints could face massive fines.
Ensuring GDPR Endpoint Compliance
Healthcare organizations are not the only ones needing to fit outside demands in regards to securing endpoints. Additional legal requirements, like the GDPR, for example, make it necessary for any organization doing business in Europe to add additional security measures. How does this impact your endpoint strategy?
Because of GDPR, organizations must walk a fine line between monitoring employees and ensuring security over company information, while also respecting and ensuring employee information is kept private and secure. Like with HIPAA, there are several main areas employers must pay attention to in regards to how they monitor and engage with employees via endpoint devices.
Establishing Consent to Monitor Employee Devices
Under GDPR, employers must establish that monitoring devices is entirely necessary, and get explicit consent from employees to do so. Additionally, to ensure GDPR compliance, employers will have to choose the least invasive method available to monitor endpoints and achieve the necessary level of security.
Additionally, a record must be kept in regards to the when and how employees give permission for their data to be used and stored. For these reasons, organizations must think hard about the kind of endpoint management and monitoring solutions they employ to get the job done.
Again, not meeting these specifications will garner any enterprise a hefty fine.
PCI DSS Endpoint Compliance
Lastly, any organization that processes payments will need to make sure endpoints are in compliance with PCI DSS. There are several ways enterprises and organizations can ensure this is done effectively. These include:
- Maintain Data Transparency: organizations must ensure that they know where data is at at all times. Data can only be stored in known location with limited access to protect credit card information.
- Securing data on the move: this compliance dictates which forms of encryption are necessary for data being processed.
- Authorized personal only: make sure data is limited to only necessary personal.
- Empower employees: most mistakes people make in regard to PCI compliance begins with the employee. Organizations should train and empower employees to know how to handle confidential payment information.
- Everything must be recorded, logged and accessible in the future.
What Makes NoTouch Software A Critical Component of Your GDPR, HIPAA and PCI DSS Compliance Strategy
It will simply never be enough for IT leaders to expect to boot an operating system, connect endpoints to a management solution, and expect their entire organization to be HIPAA, GDPR, or PCI compliant right off the bat. However, when a multifaceted approach is deployed in order to meet the standards set by law, Stratodesk software can play a critical role in enabling compliance.
This is why countless healthcare organizations use Stratodesk NoTouch software to enable secure access to critical healthcare information, and why financial institutions, retailers and beyond trust NoTouch. With NoTouch, IT leaders can ensure complete control over endpoints. Running endpoint audits and generating reports is also easy thanks to NoTouch Center. Additionally, NoTouch enables compliance even during these exceptional times, with more people working from home than ever. This is thanks to NoTouch’s ability to enable remote work, and work from anywhere.
Extend your secure digital perimeter to anywhere your workers are while ensuring compliance with Stratodesk software.