Watch CBS News

Eye On Cyber: Are Virtual Doctors Visits Secure?

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – More and more patients are taking advantage of video conferencing with their doctors in the comfort of their own homes, instead of making a trip to the office.

But are there security risks to online doctors visits?

Telemedicine is an increasingly convenient way to get medical care, but it's important to make sure the personal data you share remains private.

Whether it's the results of a blood test, your most recent blood pressure readings, or a prescription medication you take, more and more medical conversations are happening online.

Currently, about 65 percent of hospitals use telemedicine to consult with patients and other doctors, according to the American Hospital Association. And that number is only growing.

But security experts warn the connection for these sessions often are not as secure as they should be, providing access points for hackers. Sometimes the data from these sessions is stored in an insecure manner.

Before you choose a telemedicine provider, make sure they are prioritizing security.

You should ask:

Does your technology comply with the health care privacy law, known as HIPA? The answer should be yes.

Do you keep and store video sessions? The answer should be no, so there is little risk of the session turning up later online.

There are also steps you can take.

Make sure to use an encrypted video channel provided by the company. Never use Facetime or Skype.

As always, make sure you establish a strong password. That's one of the best ways to make sure no one else can access your account.

Find more from "Eye on Cyber" by clicking here.


View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.