How to Protect Confidentiality

Written by shailynn krow Google
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How to Protect Confidentiality
Never discuss another person's problems without them being present. (Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images)

A person's personal information is just that -- personal. Whether conducting a research study, dealing with patient information or using the Internet, confidentiality is a must. Protecting confidentiality involves more than keeping your mouth shut. Changing the way you act, how you operate and the things you say will protect a person's confidentiality.

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  1. 1

    Set up a password system on all computers that contain confidential information. Use strong passwords that contain a mixture of numbers, symbols and letters. Ensure your strong password is at least 14 characters long and alternates between capital and lower-case letters. Do not give out your password to anyone. Write your password down in a private area that no one can access.

  2. 2

    Use antivirus and anti-spyware software on computers. Ensure computers are protected from viruses or trackers that can implant themselves into your hard drive and remove your personal information or confidential information of people you are protecting.

  3. 3

    Discuss personal matters in a private room. Do not talk about another person's confidential situation or your own confidential situation where others are around to hear it. Close yourself and the person you are speaking to in a room or scan the area you are standing in to ensure no one is close enough to hear your conversation.

  4. 4

    Do not leave out confidential information for others to see. Lock your computer and put away papers that contain confidential information before stepping away from your desk. Do not e-mail personal information over an unsecured network. Use a secured file transfer system for transmitting personal information versus unsecured e-mail.

  5. 5

    Understand confidentiality and privacy agreements before signing them. Read disclosures that come with new accounts, e-mail servers and even creditors before signing the document. Ensure that confidential information will not be shared or sold to other companies.

  6. 6

    Do not discuss another individual's confidential information without consenting them first. For example, a doctor's office should not consult an outside physician about a patient's confidential health condition without being pre-authorisation from the patient himself.

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