Pharmacy Information Security Essay

Pages: 10 (2962 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 3  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Medicine

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

[. . .] For instance, in case the pharmacy manages a website and the former is accessed by anyone due to inappropriate authorization procedures, then the website can be removed completely from the system, because of the risk it posses which includes the leaking of confidential information to unauthorized parties in the public. The risks are, therefore, removed, and this leaves an efficient system that will efficiently retain private information and deny access to non-operators (Flammini, 2012).

Controlling physical vulnerability and risk

Controls basically act as remedies for the risks associated with the pharmacy. There are many control strategies that need to be adopted by pharmacies to ensure security is enhanced, and that the risks are remarkably reduced if not faced out. One of the incentives is to employ well trained security staff. The pharmacy will need to identify its needs before deciding on the number of security guards to hire. The staff they hire should be well trained and be qualified to fill the vacant positions.

Alarm systems/intrusion detection

Proper levels of security inside and within the premises of the pharmacy can only be secured effectively with intrusion detectors and alarm systems. Alarm systems are inclusive of any alarm terminals that should be strategically placed, communication and detection devices. Alarm signals need not be physically able, but could also be transmitted through internet protocols, wireless systems, phone and network lines and many other models of transmittal. However, the alarm systems installed should be able to prevent false alarm signals, which could be expensive to control (Finefrock, 2008).

False alarm signals usually result from human error and unexpected triggers from innocent parties. False rising of an alarm could happen when employees are accessing the building for work in the morning hours, when the cleaners are accessing the building in the evening for their respective duties, outdoor disturbances and many other reasons. Employees and managers, therefore, need to be sensitized on the ways of preventing false alarms, which have cost some pharmacies large amounts of money. However, false alarms can be countered by intelligent dispatching technological inputs, which can aid the security in determining the nature of alarms (Finefrock, 2008).

Surveillance systems

In completion, a surveillance system will contain devices such as recorders and cameras, including any other essential equipment. There are diverse types of cameras on the market, this range from the wide-dynamic range cameras to the convert models. In the case of pharmacies, the installers, with orders from the security officer, should strategically install cameras. The installation should be designed in a manner that will achieve retrieval of best images possible. Best images are gotten by purchasing appropriate camera models, which have the right lenses and mounts. The camera resolution should be set well for better assessment of the premises all the time (Finefrock, 2008).

Digital Video Recorders (DVR's)

These devices have the capability of recording sounds and images simultaneously, making them most appropriate for the pharmaceutical drug storage area. After the alarms are triggered, for instance, the security guards can easily access the recorders and capture the movement of intruders, hence denying them exit. These images can also be stored for future reference purposes. The devices contain large volumes of storage space, allowing for numerous recordings storage. Switching devices could also assist the security personnel when they need to toggle between differently located cameras (Finefrock, 2008).

Remote Video Monitoring

Regardless of the location of the pharmacy building, monitoring can be enabled to enhance on security by examining and protecting assets and the human resource within the premises. The pharmacy's size, number of employees and different parameters could be used to determine the type of remote video monitoring required. The devices can be set to ensure they respond immediately in case of intrusion or access to prohibited locations within the pharmacy. Apart from offering security, it is necessary to note that videos can be used in other productive ways such as assisting in marketing and merchandizing of drugs and other products found in the pharmacy (Finefrock, 2008).

Use of Biometrics

Thieves have been known to steal key cards and photo identifications to access unauthorized sections of pharmacies. This prompted the development of biometric models of identification. To prevent intruder's access to private data of patients and other sensitive issues, biometrics could be adopted. This is a technologically advanced model where identifying and authenticating staff and managers has been enhanced, and users are expected to perform certain functions that are sensitive in nature, which will assist in access to private locations within the pharmacy.

With the integration of this technology, users will be detected using their physical, behavioral and biological traits. Identities will be detected using advanced signals that will prevent unauthorized access to secured locations. The system will offer advanced security on the grounds that mimicking a person's physical traits will be complicated and the behavioral traits will include voice recognition and signature, strengthening the security further. The identifying and signaling will be based on hand geometry recognition, iris recognition systems, facial indexing technologies, fingerprint recognition and many others. Pharmacists could also ensure that there is good lighting inside the premises and that there are height markers on the exit doors to prevent any physical hazards. Reinforcement of all doors is also strategic in ensuring forceful intruders are kept from the stores and other sensitive areas within the pharmacy (Finefrock, 2008).

Control strategies for logical vulnerabilities

The strategies for physical controls apply in preventing logical risks. Administrative, preventive, corrective and detective measures are all developed and implemented to ensure; breaches are prevented before happening, valuable information is protected, information security is guaranteed according to procedures and standards and that costs triggered by insecurity are reduced. It is true to comment that the deployment of a logical security system/solution is complex and costly. The solutions need to protect the pharmacy's computer application, critical servers, firewalls and other elements within the system. Because security measures for physical and logical vulnerabilities are alike to some extent, only a few issues will be raised in this part as most of the strategies are already discussed previously.

Credentialing

Since it is impossible to differentiate health-related information from the physical environment, it is indispensable for the process of credentialing. This is the art of regulating the privacy and access of vital information. In some countries, regulations are strict that all healthcare facilities need to keep a credential record to secure confidential data. Credentials assist employees to access areas within the pharmacy that are private such as computer systems and safes which are open to everyone. In creating credentials, security is asked to develop many factors that will authenticate someone, hence reducing the risks and security threats. This can be done by combining access requirements, such as passwords and key cards being needed at the same time (Finefrock, 2008).

Contrary to offering security, multiple passwords given to employees could compromise with the security of the pharmacy as employees have difficulty with remembering multiple passwords that are complex. When they write the passwords down and expose then in their areas of work, this increases the risk of unauthorized access. Pharmacies are advised to adopt the single sign-on model and other authentication solutions that will protect access to assets, information and employee security.

Access control

Controlling access can be done in many ways, to ensure critical areas are not intruded. Good locks, in this time and era, are not sufficient enough, and they are said to be allowing unauthorized access instead. This is because of easy duplication of keys. Areas with computer systems that store confidential data and the pharmacy's assets need reinforcement on the doors. Integrated access systems that are controlled from a central place happen to be a better option than the ordinary ancient locking. System operators will have an easier task in controlling the entry of different people. Also, it promotes accountability because the security can determine when someone accessed the building, and what time it was (Finefrock, 2008).

Conclusion

Access controls, credentialing, biometrics, alarms, burglar proofing and general surveillance are just but a few ways to enhance security within the pharmacy. As the markets grow, and pharmacies increase their annual turnover, higher measures of security are required in protecting the inventory, funds and information of the organizations. The information security officer has to be vigilant enough to ensure security tools are adopted when necessary, especially after assessing the threats and vulnerabilities facing the security of the pharmacy.

References

Fennelly, L. (2012). Effective Physical Security. New York: Butterworth -- Heinemann Publishers.

Finefrock, J. (2008, November 8). Integrated Security Programs: Protect Data, Pharmaceuticals, Merchandise and Employees. Retrieved December 18, 2012, from http://www.diebold.com/dnpssec/casestudies/DBD_WhitePaper_PharmacySecurity.pdf

Flammini, F. (2012). Critical Infrastructure Security: Assessment, Prevention, Detection, Response. New York: WIT Press.

Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations,… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Pharmacy Information Security.  (2012, December 19).  Retrieved December 14, 2018, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/pharmacy-information-security/8525390

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