Dell's Marchand Says Encrypting Mobile Device Data Essential in Health Care

By Brian T. Horowitz  |  Posted 2011-10-05 Print this article Print

title=Mobility Altering the Health Information Security Landscape} 

eWEEK: How is mobility changing the landscape of health information security?

Marchand: I think there's a real concern of how do you allow people to have the mobility to do their job and how do we make that data secure. They will allow these devices to be used but will load software on it that will make sure that every interaction between that personal device and the system's network is controlled, so that if anything ever happens to the phone, you can lock it down, you can encrypt it or you can wipe that portion of the data off the phone without touching some of their personal resources.

eWEEK: How is security handled differently for health information on mobile devices versus desktop?

Marchand: I think you're going to see some of the same things on the desktop. It's just more of the techniques we use because we have to support more operating systems, and everything else is slightly different for the truly mobile device. Some consider a laptop a mobile device. The desktop is going to become less prevalent over time as people have different ways to access system resources and to access what they need to-as we get more devices out there, managing those from a central place where there's a single set of credentials to manage. What the physicians don't want is to have three or four devices to make them more efficient.

Essential credential management is going to be an important part moving forward. The encryption side of it. Knowing where your endpoints are and knowing if it's a place you're able to track it down.

You may have six different operating systems when people use their own devices. It's OK to let them do that, but you're going to make them load software on to the device. Software segregates what was loaded on for business reasons versus personal reasons. If a phone or mobile device gets lost or gets stolen, all the information that went through that software can be wiped off of that device remotely.


Brian T. Horowitz is a freelance technology and health writer as well as a copy editor. Brian has worked on the tech beat since 1996 and covered health care IT and rugged mobile computing for eWEEK since 2010. He has contributed to more than 20 publications, including Computer Shopper, Fast Company,, More, NYSE Magazine, Parents,, USA Weekend and, as well as other consumer and trade publications. Brian holds a B.A. from Hofstra University in New York.

Follow him on Twitter: @bthorowitz


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