Hacking is becoming a menace in the world today. If you run a business, it is one of those risks that you should be careful about. The best way to stay safe is by checking your systems to help identify vulnerabilities. But the challenge is telling which part of your business can’t get hacked.
For instance, many people wonder if their business fax can get hacked. It is essential to know if your fax can get hacked so that you seal any potential security loopholes on it. So, is it possible to hack business fax? This article will take an in-depth look at fax breaches.
Let’s get started.
So, Can a Fax Be Hacked?
Yes, like almost every other communication tool, a fax machine has its risks. And one of the significant risks that this tool comes with is that it can get hacked if you don’t secure it properly. There already are reports of companies whose networks have been breached because of a fax breach.
The medical field is one industry that heavily relies on fax machines. Medical practitioners use fax to transmit patient data between different departments and outside their facilities. This poses a significant threat to the privacy of patient data, as security experts have warned before.
There has even been a call to end the usage of fax machines in hospitals by 2020 and move to more secure alternatives. But then, many hospitals are yet to shift from using fax machines. Transfering over 75% of all healthcare communication via fax to other channels will require time and patience.
The good news is that all hospitals and practitioners will have to ditch the fax or invest more in its security. The HIPAA regulations that organizations need to adhere to give people the right to protected health information. This requires the prioritization of every patient’s private data.
No patient’s past or future health details should get exposed to a third party. Also, it is against the law to expose information about health services rendered to an individual. Lastly, the past, present, and future payments made for healthcare must remain private and never exposed.
The fax machine doesn’t guarantee the level of privacy needed for HIPAA compliance. It will only be worth using if the vulnerabilities get identified and the proper measures are taken. This will make it safe to transmit patient data and comply with HIPAA regulations.
Potential Reasons For Fax Vulnerability
There are various ways that people with malicious intent can compromise your fax. It will help to know why your fax machine or process might get exposed to multiple threats. We will examine the two primary reasons why your fax might not be secure. Let’s get started:
- Using Paper-Based Faxes Without Proper Security Protocols
Traditional desktop faxes are the most common in organizations that still leverage this communication tool. Faxing by paper has been there for decades, and several US-based companies still use it. But then, this traditional faxing method can also get exposed to threats.
If you’ve worked in an office that uses shared fax, you can tell how risky it can be. You might end up reading fax that doesn’t belong to you at one point. Using a fax to transmit sensitive data isn’t a good idea because anyone can accidentally read this information.
This means you’ll have violated HIPAA regulations. Also, it violates the data privacy regulations by GLBA and SOX. Besides, you might never tell the intentions of anyone that mistakenly reads your fax in the office. Several companies have suffered internal data breaches by employees.
Therefore, your entire network might get exposed because someone found data they should not have. And the fact that they have legitimate access to the fax might make it even harder to notice a breach. This might lead to a significant loss of sensitive business and customer data.
Last but not least, fax machines can get stolen if burglars break into an office. Remember that standard fax machines store electronic copies of the data they process. Anyone with malicious intent can steal the machine and use sophisticated techniques to extract data and steal it.
- Storing and Archiving Business Faxes Without Proper Security
There are various points at which one can lose data. It can happen when it is in transit or while stored somewhere. We have already mentioned that fax machines store electronic records of the data they process. It’ll still be vulnerable even when stored electronically in the fax machine.
Few businesses think about the potential of losing data when it’s stored. They strengthen their security systems to prevent losing data while in transit. But it is advisable to invest in securing data even when it is stored. This means sealing all potential loopholes to ensure data safety.
It would be best if you had a plan for storing files after sending them electronically through fax. Having a plan will make it easy to ensure your entire network is secure. One of the steps you can take is investing in a cloud fax service that will help you store your data securely in the cloud.
This solution can also help you store your business’s inbound data. It means no one can access the data even if they have your machine. It also means you can never lose your sensitive files. This works more like a backup service for your sensitive files.
Your Business Fax Can Be Hacked, Secure It
Now you have answers to your questions about fax breaches. The key takeaway is that it is possible to hack into fax machines and breach a network. As a business owner, you should not overlook your fax machine and process when sealing security loopholes on your network.
Ensure you invest in proper security for your fax. This is so especially if you and your team use the fax to send and receive sensitive data. There are various ways that a fax can get exposed to breaches. You need to identify vulnerabilities and take proper steps to secure your fax.