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5 Tips To Prevent Medical Records Theft
There’s something happening right now, and we all know what it is. COVID-19 is sweeping the globe, and a lot of people are seeking medical attention. With an influx of patients comes an increase of medical records being passed around. You would think that the predators might take a break giving the situation, but there is no rest for the wicked, they see only opportunity. So we really need to keep our medical records safe from theft during this period, just like all of them, but even more so now.
There are many things you can do, we’ll look at 5 of them to get you well on your way. Common sense supported by education goes a long way to keeping you safe from fraud attempts.
Our 5 Tips
Review Your Medical Records
Since these records are yours, and yours to view, you can easily take a peek at them when you want. Doing so keeps you on top of what procedures, prescriptions, and expenses you’ve incurred. By doing this, and keeping note of what you see, you can be on the lookout for anything suspicious. If you see anything untoward in your records, you’ll know they’ve been compromised, and can take steps towards correcting the issues.
Think Of Medical Records Like Financial Records
You wouldn’t want to share your financial records everywhere would you? Didn’t think so. Having the same attitude with your medical records will go a long way to keeping you safe. Share only the minimal amount of information you have to, and only with trusted sources, your doctor for example.
Even avoid posting on social media about your medical procedures and prescriptions. While your security settings may have it so that only your friends can see what you’re posting, this is not a fool proof method of staying on top of your security. Information has a way of spreading when you didn’t expect it to.
Be Skeptical Of Emails
All it takes is one click on an email you didn’t recognize that then leaves something behind on your computer. Less dastardly ones may require you to send back information manually, but no matter the method, the result is the same if you fall for it. You just handed out private information someone can use for information theft.
Decide Between Paper Or Digital
There’s a lot of options out there these days between how to store one’s records. More and more things that used to be handled through paper are being handled with digital options. This can lead to some of us having information across both, which opens up more options for people to come for your information. Choose what your prefered format is for files, take all necessary security precautions, and stick with that.
Store Records Securely
No matter what format you choose, keep records stored in a secure manner. For paper records, consider using a good safe that’s kept out of sight and out of mind. A lockable file cabinet can work if you’re lacking a safe, but they aren’t as recomendable.
Paper records also need to be destroyed after their retention period has passed. Digital files need good and strong passwords protecting your logins, and secure servers for your databases. Any information that was saved onto hard drives makes it necessary to destroy these devices at the end of their lifespan, which prevents data recovery attempts. The harder and less accessible records are, the greater chance you have of keeping your information safe.
Keep Yourself Safe
Be sure to remain vigilant for your medical records information safety during these times. It can be easy to forget this while COVID-19 is the main topic of concern, but once it passes, you don’t want to end up with more troubles. You don’t have to go it alone on the information protection front, certified help is available to you.
March 17, 2020