Archive for July, 2009

(Lack Of) Encryption Is A Basis For Notification Under The HITECH Act

Friday, July 31st, 2009

This week one of my tweeps asked me the following: “What’s your interpretation of encryption obligations for PHI data-at-rest under HITECH? Many parties are sweating this now.” Great question!


HITECH Act: Breach Notification Is Necessary Based Upon Items Used In De-Identification

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

Continuing along the discussion of the HITECH Act this week, I want to consider a couple of questions I recently discussed with a CISO at a healthcare insurer about when breach notification is necessary…


Is This A Breach Under The HITECH Act Definition?

Monday, July 27th, 2009

This week I want to take a closer look at some of the issues and requirements within the HITECH Act, which dramatically expands the reach and requirements under the U.S. Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)…


New MO Breach Notice Law: Encryption Safe Harbor? Yes. Encryption Def Good? No!

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009

On July 9, 2009 the Missouri governor signed House Bill No. 62 into law, and it included section 407.1500, which is the requirement for giving privacy breach notice.
Since I’m focusing this week on encryption laws, I want to take a moment and point out the horrible way in which encryption is defined within this new Missouri law..


Has Massachusetts Encryption Law Stopped It’s Evolution?

Monday, July 20th, 2009

This week I want to take a look at encryption laws. Only a few short years ago no law or regulation really had explicit encryption requirements. HIPAA, passed in 1996 with effective compliance deadline requirements in 2003 (Privacy Rule) and 2005 (Security Rule) included withint the Security Rule that encryption was “addressable” based upon the results of risk assessment.
However, encryption became a more hotly debated topic with the more recent Massachusetts and Nevada laws that explicitly require organizations to encrypt personally identifiable information (PII). Now the question of whether or not the Massachusetts law will indeed be enforced upon the current compliance date of January 1, 2010 is once more in the news…


What is PII? How About “Publicly Available” Info?

Thursday, July 16th, 2009

There is much debate about what specific types of items should be considered as personally identifiable information (PII). A common topic of debate is; if information can be found publicly does that mean it is not PII?


What is PII? How About Groups Of Otherwise Non-PII?

Wednesday, July 15th, 2009

I want to continue my look at the concept of personally identifiable information (PII), and what types of items, in particular, are considered as such…


What is PII? How About IP Addresses?

Monday, July 13th, 2009

This week I want to look at the concept of personally identifiable information (PII), and what types of items, in particular, are considered as such…


Crooks Don’t Need to Steal SSNs If They Can Create Valid SSNs Themselves

Friday, July 10th, 2009

I’ve had some very interesting discussions about the CMU SSN study throughout the week, and, before moving on to other topics next week, I wanted to wrap up the week and discussion with some final thoughts on the CMU SSN topic..


Implications Of The CMU SSN Study: What Business Leaders Need To Understand

Wednesday, July 8th, 2009

Following the release of the CMU SNN report on Monday, I’ve had some very interesting discussions with privacy and information security folks, and I’ve been pretty amazed at some of the reactions to the study.
I also posted about this to one of the GRC mailing lists I participate in, and I got some questions asking me for my thoughts about some specific issues. I wanted to share those thoughts here as well…