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How Are You Celebrating World Backup Day?

Posted March 27, 2019 by Nathan N.

Dental_Software_XLDent_XLBackupSunday, March 31st, is World Backup Day. It may not be as exciting as something like National Cheesecake Day, but it does serve as a good reminder to set aside time to go over your backup procedure and disaster recovery plan. Here are some good questions to ask yourself.

AM I DOING ANY KIND OF BACKUP AT ALL?

This is the most important question. The answer should be a strong, confident YES. If it isn’t, I urge you to find a solution ASAP. Trust me, you do not want to be a victim of major data loss!

HOW AM I BACKING UP?

Who is in charge of running the backups? What software program, if any, is running the backups? Where is it installed? When and how often do the backups run? Where does the backup go? Flash drive, external hard drive, network storage appliance, offsite to the cloud? Are the backups only on one device or is there redundancy? Is there a time period in which data expires from the backup? If a file got deleted several months ago, would I be able to restore it from a backup? Are the backups encrypted? What is the process for restoring data from the backup?

WHAT IS GETTING BACKED UP?

Is everything important getting backed up? The obvious things are your practice management software database and patient x-rays, but there are other important things than can get overlooked. Do I use a software program for accounting and financials, and is that data getting backed up? Do I use Outlook to receive and view e-mails? Are e-mails stored on the mail server or do they get saved locally to the computer? Are important documents getting backup? Where are they stored; on a front desk or office computer? Or are they on the server and shared to the other computers in the office? It is a good idea to make a list of all your crucial data and where it is located so that you can ensure it’s backed up and protected.

IS IT WORKING?

How do I know everything I need backed up is getting backed up? Are the backups running every day? How do I know the backup data is good? How do I know it can be restored in a disaster recovery situation? Make certain that your backup is reliable by conducting periodic audits of your backups to make sure everything you need backed up is getting backed up, the backed-up data isn’t bad or corrupt, and the restore process is functional.

WILL MY HAIR GROW BACK AFTER I’VE PULLED IT ALL OUT?

While this may feel like an overwhelming, hair-pulling topic, it doesn’t have to be! With the help of a trusted solution like XLBackup, each of the above questions is answered. You’ll have peace-of-mind knowing you’ve done your part, and we’ve done ours. From secure encrypted data transmission to an offsite location, daily monitoring to ensure your backups are running without error, annual audits of your backups, to restoring your data in a disaster recovery situation, we take care of it.

As you work on this list of questions, if any remain unanswered or have left you feeling uncertain, contact us for more information about the XLBackup Offsite Storage Solution.

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World Backup Day 2018

Posted March 26, 2018 by Nathan N.

It’s inevitable; one day you will lose your data. If you haven’t, that’s great! But in all reality, you probably just haven’t yet. Hardware failure, virus, ransomware, theft, fire, flood, accidental deletion, misuse, natural disaster. These are all determined to take precious photos, videos, documents, and critical business data away from you. As Murphy’s law says: Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong (and at the worst possible time!). It can be a painstaking and time-consuming process to rebuild what you’ve lost, and in some instances, there is no recreating what was lost.

This can be a scary thought, but it doesn’t have to be if you have a trusted backup solution.

I expect that most are familiar with what backups are and why they should be done. In my line of work as XLDent’s Technical Support, it’s shocking how many people I encounter that know this, but still aren’t backing up what’s most important to them. Imagine losing just one year of patients, appointments, history’s, x-rays, and clinical notes. Recently, this just happened. Contrary to our recommendation, this client hadn’t performed a backup for that long. One year. One day their server hard drive failed. Money was spent sending the drive to a data recovery company only to find out that none of the data was recoverable from the failed drive. With a good, responsive IT company and a daily backup, a practice can usually be up and fully operational the very next day with minimal loss. Unfortunately, for this practice, lack of a current backup led to an attempt to recover data from a bad drive, which was ultimately unsuccessful.

Dental_Software_XLDent_XLBackupTo honor World Backup Day, this is a reminder to take a look at your backup. Your business data is invaluable and we don’t want this scenario (or worse) to happen to you. If you aren’t confident in your current solution, contact us about our World Backup Day XLBackup promotion.

Posted in: Dental Practice Management Software, Dental Software, Dental Technology, Electronic Dental Records, Leave a comment/ No Comments »
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What World Backup Day Means To Me

Posted March 27, 2017 by Ryan S

A Day in the Life of an IT guy.

It’s Tuesday, 8:22am, and I just got a call from a panicked office manager. She’s having problems getting into her system and things are not working right. Nobody in the office can get into their software to start their day. Unfortunately, as an IT technician, this isn’t the first time I’ve seen this happen. A virus attack, hard drive failure, or even something as simple as accidental deletion of a file can quickly create chaos for a business. My first question…Do you have a backup?

The next part of our conversation can go one of three ways. 1) There is no backup. 2) There is a backup. But, it wasn’t working properly or backing up the right stuff. 3) There is a backup and it’s good, it’s recent, and we’re on our way to restoring the data and getting them up and running. What path would you be headed down?

Backups can mean the difference between picking up where you left off or starting completely over from scratch. Backups should be one of the most important decisions a dental practice owner makes. They can be done multiple ways. It may be as simple as plugging in an external hard drive and manually copying the files you want. Or, it could be a fully automated, encrypted, secure backup to an offsite storage location.

What type of backup is right for me?backup

The answer to that question all depends on the type of business you’re in, the amount of data backed up, and how quickly you need that data back if it’s taken away. More often than not, dental software and digital imaging relies on hundreds or thousands of files and folders and even multiple databases. Your day to day operation depends on all of them to be there and working. Considering anything less than a fully automated offsite backup solution is a gamble you don’t want to take.

Putting your data at risk each day at the cost of a cup of Starbucks isn’t worth it. It is far too easy to accidentally open an email and get hit with a ransomware virus, for a hard drive to reach its end-of-life, or for any number of unforeseen things to happen. Data that is held hostage or even damaged can leave you with a business that is brought to a screeching halt. If you have a good backup and a reliable service partner who makes it a priority to get you through a crisis, you can recover with relatively little pain and interruption.

Let’s get back to where my call started on Tuesday morning. Fortunately for her and the practice, we headed down path #3. They were doing a secure offsite backup. I was able to clean the virus from the computer, reload the operating system and programs, and get the data restore underway. Soon they were back to their business of taking care of patients.

If I can leave you with one piece of advice on this World Backup Day, consider your data. Consider its value, the role it plays in your everyday, how hard it works for you from scheduling to clinical notes, planned treatments and taking x-rays. Electronic dental records are amazing and I don’t know of anyone who wants to go back to paper chart days. But those records need to be protected and a reliable, secure, offsite backup is the first step in doing so.

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Strengthen your Risk Management Plan Today

Posted January 31, 2017 by Alexa S.

Risk Management Quote

As individuals, society, and organizations, we take risks regularly as a necessary step to grow and develop. Forecasting and evaluating what is needed to incorporate risk management and minimize negative impact is not something that everyone or every organization takes time to focus on. It is important to make sure that your dental practice has adequate tools to combat threats and ensure security. Your business must evolve and adapt to ensure it is minimizing risks while maximizing growth potential. However, risk management is not always a one size fits all solution.

As we continue through our risk management series, there are three important areas where XLDent can help you strengthen your risk management plan today.

Offsite Backup Storage

How frequently are you backing up your patient and practice data? Are you making sure your backup system is secure and HIPAA compliant? With XLBackup, you have a managed, fully automated, online, off-site, data protection service that can help you keep a potentially serious business risk under control. By using XLBackup, you enable your dental practice to quickly restore lost files, images and critical data to get your practice up and running in a disaster recovery situation. Let’s break down the important considerations in a backup solution.

  • Managed service: The XLBackup service includes professional management of your back up solution. This includes storage management and optimization, data integrity and verification checks, and annual disaster recovery fire drills.
  • HIPAA Secure: Incorporates critical secure elements such as HIPAA compliant encryption technology, storage in multiple data centers and Federal Information Processing Standards.
  • Automatic Data Healing: This automated process runs in the remote data center, performs in the background, and scans the entire storage to ensure data integrity by checking data blocks and comparing digital signatures for inconsistencies.
  • Data De-Duplication: Essentially, you won’t have multiple copies of everything causing a headache in a recovery situation. Data is compared based on its content to the appropriate repository and a pointer is used to point from the data’s original location to the library location.
  • Local Storage: Backup on a local device so immediate restoration at LAN speed can occur.

XLBackup is compatible with all Dental Practice Management and Image Management solutions. It is an absolutely necessary component of your electronic dental records risk management.

SecureMail – HIPAA Compliant Email

Need to send sensitive patient information via email? Don’t risk PHI by sending with just any email client or service. With SecureMail, you’ll be able to send information and file attachments that are protected from accidental exposure and data theft. At the same time, SecureMail ensures compliance, guards your reputation, builds customer trust, and reduces business process cost. It also includes the added security of being able to track and confirm sent, received and open emails. SecureMail is a cost effective, cloud-based service that is available to any practice, regardless of dental practice management system.

Credit Card Processing

Credit and debit transactions that use EMV technology are an important milestone in managing risk in card payment transactions. Point-to-point encryption (P2PE) combines secure devices, applications and processes to encrypt data throughout the transaction, making it an integral part of your card payment solution. XLCharge not only makes it easy with integrated payment processes right inside the XLDent practice management software, but also offers you a level of security you can depend on.

These are just a handful of ways your technology choices guide you in developing a viable risk management plan. Let XLDent take some of the stress out of your risk management.

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HIPAA: Keep your data and practice protected

Posted January 12, 2017 by Alexa S.

We get it, HIPAA isn’t the most exciting topic out there. However, it is a topic that needs to be a priority to every dental practice. A lack of attention to HIPAA details could cost you. HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) was established in 1996 as a way to promote and standardize information stored and exchanged, as well as create a guideline for transaction, security, and privacy standards. A common buzzword associated with HIPAA is PHI (Protected Health Information) which is individually identifiable health information that is held or transmitted by a covered entity or its business associate. There are 3 primary categories in HIPAA that we should first take a look at.

The HIPAA Privacy Rule establishes standards to protect individuals’ medical records and other personal health information. The HIPAA Security Rule deals with electronic Protected Health Information (ePHI). The HIPAA Breach Notification Rule requires covered entities to notify affected individuals, HHS, and in some cases, the media of a breach of unsecured PHI.

Now that we have reviewed the nuts and bolts of HIPAA, what do you think the most common HIPAA violation is? Negligence. Negligence can in the form of either intentional or unintentional. More often than not in a dental office, unintentional negligence is the most common. Human error is the number one offender for unintentional negligence. It cHIPAAan be as simple as an employee who forgets to log out of the computer when leaving, or other violations such as improper data disposal or a lost backup device. A first step in minimizing the unintentional acts is with proper staff training. HIPAA education and processes should be ongoing in your practice. Every team member should participate in HIPAA training and should understand the do’s and don’ts that surround patient data.

So, what are you doing to keep your office HIPAA compliant? For starters, do you feel that you are keeping up with your computer security? The modern practice relies on technology for successful and seamless daily operation, and not having a safe and secure technology system could lead to costly downtime and even violation fines. One way to make sure your practice is doing all that it can to back up data is with XLBackup. This offsite backup storage uses HIPAA compliant encryption technology system that stores your data in multiple data centers. For added security and peace of mind, this solution is consistent with NIST publication 800-11 and follows Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) 140-2. Using XLBackup is an easy way to make sure your information is automatically backed up to a secure location, and the more automation surrounding your data, the better.

Another area to consider when making sure you are staying HIPAA compliant is an encrypted email service. XLDent offers SecureMail which is a HIPAA compliant email service that will secure sensitive patient email and file attachments from accidental exposure and data theft. SecureMail ensures compliance, guards your reputation, builds customer trust, and reduces business process costs.

There are many tips you can find surrounding HIPAA compliance and best practices. Here are a few you can start implementing today.

  1. Make sure your team is trained in HIPAA compliance.
  2. Regulate who has access to sensitive information.
  3. Keep an inventory of your office computers and devices.
  4. Wipe down tablet and touchscreen devices to ensure clear entries and to prevent easy guessing for entry to systems.
  5. Do not share passwords.
  6. Keep anti-virus scanning software up to date.

For more information about offsite backup, email security and other services to keep your data safe visit www.xldent.com.

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