Incidental Exposure to Health Information May Lead to Substantial HIPAA Exposure for ISPs


Whether telecommunications carriers or Internet service providers (ISPs) know it or not, they may be subject to the privacy, security, and breach notification requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) rules. HIPAA’s expansive reach may extend to ISPs that maintain individually identifiable health information on their systems. Penalties for violating the HIPAA rules can reach the millions of dollars, even for unknowing violations.

Thus, carriers and ISPs would be well served to:

- Evaluate the likelihood that they are maintaining health information on behalf of health care providers or health plans, such as through the provision of e-mail accounts, web hosting services, and other on-line offerings;

- Determine whether they are covered by HIPAA as business associates; and

- Consider creating a HIPAA compliance program to conform existing privacy and security safeguards to HIPAA.

Please see full advisory below for more information.

LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.

Written by:

Published In:

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Davis Wright Tremaine LLP | Attorney Advertising

Don't miss a thing! Build a custom news brief:

Read fresh new writing on compliance, cybersecurity, Dodd-Frank, whistleblowers, social media, hiring & firing, patent reform, the NLRB, Obamacare, the SEC…

…or whatever matters the most to you. Follow authors, firms, and topics on JD Supra.

Create your news brief now - it's free and easy »

All the intelligence you need, in one easy email:

Great! Your first step to building an email digest of JD Supra authors and topics. Log in with LinkedIn so we can start sending your digest...

Sign up for your custom alerts now, using LinkedIn ›

* With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name.