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Building hippa compliant and PIPEDA compliant mobile application

25

Jan. 23

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Building a mobile application that is compliant with both HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) and PIPEDA (Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act) regulations can be a complex process, but it is essential for protecting sensitive patient information and maintaining the privacy and security of personal data. In this article, we will discuss the key considerations and best practices for building a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application.

 

1. Data Encryption

 

One of the most important considerations for building a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application is data encryption. Both regulations require that sensitive patient information and personal data be encrypted both in transit and at rest. This means that any data that is transmitted over a network or stored on a device must be encrypted using a secure encryption algorithm.

When it comes to data encryption, there are two main types: symmetric and asymmetric encryption. Symmetric encryption uses the same key for both encryption and decryption, while asymmetric encryption uses a public key for encryption and a private key for decryption.

HIPAA and PIPEDA regulations require the use of 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) for symmetric encryption and RSA for asymmetric encryption. These are both considered to be secure encryption algorithms and are widely used in the industry

 

2. Secure Data Transmission

 

Another important consideration for building a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application is secure data transmission. Both regulations require that sensitive patient information and personal data be transmitted over a secure network using a secure protocol.

The most common secure protocol used for data transmission is HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure). HTTPS uses SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) or its successor, TLS (Transport Layer Security) to encrypt data in transit and to ensure that the connection is secure.

 

3. Data Access Control

 

Data access control is another important consideration for building a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application. Both regulations require that sensitive patient information and personal data be protected by access controls, such as user authentication and authorization.

User authentication is the process of verifying the identity of a user before allowing them to access sensitive patient information and personal data. This can be done using a variety of methods, such as username and password, fingerprint, or facial recognition.

User authorization is the process of determining whether a user has the proper permissions to access sensitive patient information and personal data. This can be done by assigning roles and permissions to users, such as read only access or full access.

 

4. Regular Security Audits

 

Regular security audits are another important consideration for building a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application. Both regulations require that organizations perform regular security audits to ensure that their mobile application and data storage systems are secure.

Security audits should include a thorough examination of the mobile application’s code, as well as its data storage systems. This should include a review of the application’s encryption and data access controls, as well as its security protocols and procedures.

 

5. Compliance with Local Laws

 

It is also important to consider compliance with local laws when building a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application. Both regulations have specific requirements that must be met, and it is important to ensure that the mobile application meets these requirements.

In addition to HIPAA and PIPEDA, there may be other local laws and regulations that must be considered when building a mobile application. For example, if the mobile application is being built for use in the European Union, it must also comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

 

Building a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application, it is important to use a secure cloud infrastructure that meets the requirements of both regulations.

 

One of the best options for a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant cloud infrastructure is using a cloud provider that has achieved SOC 2 Type II certification. SOC 2 Type II certification is a rigorous standard that verifies that a cloud provider has implemented strong security controls to protect sensitive patient information and personal data.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure are two of the most popular cloud providers that have achieved SOC 2 Type II certification. Both provide a wide range of services, including data encryption, secure data transmission, and data access controls, that can be used to build a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application.

In addition to using a secure cloud infrastructure, it is important to implement a strong continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) strategy to ensure that the mobile application is secure and up-to-date. A strong CI/CD strategy should include the following elements:

 

  • Automated testing: Automated testing is an essential component of a CI/CD strategy, as it ensures that new code changes do not introduce security vulnerabilities or break existing functionality. Automated testing should include unit testing, integration testing, and security testing.
  • Code review: Code review is an important step in the CI/CD process, as it allows developers to review each other’s code changes and identify any potential security vulnerabilities.
  • Deployment automation: Deployment automation is a key component of a CI/CD strategy, as it allows for the rapid and consistent deployment of new code changes. This can be done using tools like Jenkins or TravisCI.
  • Monitor and Logging: It’s important to have a robust monitoring and logging strategy in place, so that you can detect any security breaches or anomalies in a timely manner.

 

Building a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application requires a combination of strong security controls and a robust CI/CD strategy. Using a cloud infrastructure provider that has achieved SOC 2 Type II certification, implementing automated testing, code review, deployment automation and monitoring/logging, can help to ensure that the mobile application is secure and up-to-date, and that it meets the requirements of both HIPAA and PIPEDA regulations.

When developing a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application, there are several important architectural and infrastructural considerations that need to be taken into account:

  1. Data segregation: It is important to ensure that sensitive patient information and personal data is segregated from other data to prevent unauthorized access. This can be achieved by using separate databases or by implementing data access controls.
  2.  Multi-factor authentication: Multi-factor authentication is a key architectural consideration, as it provides an additional layer of security to protect sensitive patient information and personal data. This can be achieved by using a combination of username and password, fingerprint, or facial recognition.
  3.  Network segmentation: Network segmentation is another important architectural consideration, as it allows you to separate sensitive patient information and personal data from other data on the network. This can be achieved by using virtual private networks (VPNs) or firewalls.
  4. Incident response plan: It’s important to have an incident response plan in place in case of a security breach or data loss. This should include procedures for identifying, responding to and resolving security incidents.
  5.  Backup and disaster recovery: It is important to have a robust backup and disaster recovery plan in place to ensure that sensitive patient information and personal data can be restored
    in the event of a disaster. This should include regular backups and offsite storage of data.
  6. Mobile device management (MDM): MDM is essential for protecting sensitive patient information and personal data on mobile devices. This can be achieved by using a mobile device management solution to manage and monitor mobile devices, including the ability to remotely wipe data if a device is lost or stolen.
  7.  Access Management: Access management is important to ensure that only authorized users can access sensitive patient information and personal data. This can be achieved by implementing role-based access controls, and regularly reviewing and revoking access privileges as needed.
  8.  Compliance monitoring: Regular monitoring of compliance is also important to ensure that the mobile application and infrastructure meet the requirements of HIPAA and PIPEDA regulations. This can be achieved by using compliance management software and regular security audits.

 

In summary, building a HIPAA and PIPEDA compliant mobile application requires a combination of strong security controls, robust architecture, and a well-designed infrastructure. By implementing data segregation, multi-factor authentication, network segmentation, incident response plan, backup and disaster recovery, mobile device management, access management, and compliance monitoring, organizations can ensure that sensitive patient information and personal data is protected and that the mobile application meets the requirements of both HIPAA and PIPEDA regulations.

Author

Lets Nurture
Posted by Lets Nurture

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