Last year, the FBI reported a 400% upsurge in data breaches, and cyber-security threats can impact any business, including the transcription sector. In 2014, about 15,000 patients’ data from Boston Medical Center was breached through a transcription firm's poorly secured website. Therefore, before using transcription services, you should ensure your account information and files are secure. The information you’re converting to text, be it a courtroom or deposition recording, may be sensitive. A secure and legitimate transcription firm should ideally provide the following key data security and confidentiality guarantees:
Any transcription firm that takes data security seriously should be ready to sign NDAs. Agreeing to an NDA indicates that your provider has implemented reasonable measures to guard your audio and text files. All their employees involved in transcribing or handling your files should also be willing to sign confidentiality agreements. Not doing so indicates that the transcription provider lacks credibility.
The organization should implement staff compliance with confidentiality agreements and also conduct cybersecurity best practice training to help their employees adhere to data privacy rules. Staff vetting and regular assessments can help guarantee that all transcriptionists understand the dos and don’ts of protecting sensitive customer data.
ISO 27001 provides the maximum standards to manage information security. Therefore, you can rely on an organization that has this certification. Being certified indicates that the firm strictly follows the standard to protect sensitive personal data from multiple cyber threats. Similarly, the provider is subject to continuous data security audits and monitoring to ensure 100% compliance.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has provided several personal data security measures that companies with European-based customers must implement. If you work with European businesses, then you should enlist a GDPR-compliant transcription service. You can avoid many legal and compliance hassles by ensuring that any third parties handling your sensitive customer data adhere to GDPR requirements. Companies with GDPR compliance can legally tackle the situation if your data is mishandled, making such organizations more trustworthy.
When searching for a secure transcription provider, always assess their specific cybersecurity measures. A provider that complies with the various data protection regulations, including GDPR, must guarantee maximum device security. They should ensure that all their employees use secure laptops or mobile devices to access office IT networks.
The machines used by transcriptionists to complete their official tasks should have end-point protection to prevent common cyber attacks. In compliance with ISO 27001, your provider should keep track of all devices that employees use to do official work. IT security managers or administrators should also monitor device usage and audit access logs. Any security incident should be reported and acted upon to protect customer data. Your provider should also have a robust strategy to maximize device security.
Compliance with GDPR and ISO 27001 requires implementing specific data security features to secure IT systems, including software and websites, properly. Data transcriptionists need to employ the following cybersecurity measures to protect client data at rest and in transit:
Generally, discuss your data security concerns with your transcription service provider before working with them. They should explain the measures they have in place to guarantee the privacy and confidentiality of the files you’re willing to share.