Warwick Ashford reports on what seems to me to be yet another case of hard-coded credentials creating a critical vulnerability in protecting patient data, and I, of course, have questions. Ashford reports:
The QuicDoc & Office Therapy suite of software produced by DocuTrac contains security vulnerabilities that could allow attackers to gain control of patient data, warns security firm Rapid7.
According to Rapid7, the software contains a number of static accounts that are not disclosed to the end-user, and are identical across all installations of the medical records software.
Read more on ComputerWeekly. I looked to see what DocuTrac claimed about HIPAA compliance and found the following on their site:
Our practice management and clinical documentation software for behavioral health providers has HIPAA compliant features for the security of protected health information (PHI). DocuTrac’s HIPAA features whether Cloud or Client-Server based include secure access, audit log tracking for internal audits, and a disclosure of protected information log to record and track all PHI disclosures. Our practice management software uses HIPAA compliant files for electronic claims and contains HIPAA compliant procedure and diagnosis codes.
We ensure all our electronic medical records software, electronic health record software, medical billing software, practice management software, and e-prescribing software are HIPAA compliant to assist healthcare organizations in protecting their sensitive data.
But is it really HIPAA-compliant if there are hard-coded credentials? Or are there other safeguards that they incorporate that somehow minimize the concern over hard-coded credentials? I’d love to have an expert explain that to me.
As to the time to disclosure, Ashford reports:
Although DocuTrac was alerted to the vulnerabilities on 9 January 2018 and two subsequent communications via telephone and email, no software update had been issued by 14 March, when Rapid7 went public with the vulnerabilities.
Was QuicDoc given enough time to remedy the problem before Rapid7 went public? How long should they have been given to address the issue? Regardless of whether you think that the issue never should have occurred, if it did occur, what would be a reasonable amount of time to address it before it was disclosed?