Is Your Transcription Service Secure?

Are you aware that many companies, including transcription services, can potentially be hacked? You don’t want hackers stealing your transcription files. So what should you do? Find a secure transcription service using the information below.

Many clients, from Fortune 500 companies to medical professionals to lawyers and law enforcement agencies, require high transcription security for sensitive material. If leaked, the information in sensitive audio files could negatively impact a business’s strategy or legal case or reveal embarrassing and personal medical information.

Secure transcription services are available if you follow the security features below to ensure your transcriptions are protected and secure with the appropriate HIPAA and CJIS requirements.

secure transcription service

Understanding the Transcription Process

On the surface, the transcription process is simple. Clients forward their audio or video files to a transcription service (hopefully through a secure server) to have them converted to a written format.

Clients can select non-verbatim or verbatim (captures every word and sound) transcription. Other options include turnaround time, the number of transcribed speakers, among other factors. For some clients, security isn’t a significant concern. For others, it’s imperative.

Securing Your Transcription Project

Suppose you are a U.S. business, individual, service provider, legal or law enforcement professional, journalist, or healthcare provider. In that case, you’ll want to confirm that they are a secure transcription service and that they can provide confidential services with multiple layers of protection by offering a high-level security protocol.

Check Dun & Bradstreet Ratings

Individuals often rely on consumer credit ratings. For businesses, having a Dun & Bradstreet D-U-N-S (Data Universal Numbering System) nine-digit number provides potential vendors, lenders, and clients a method to determine a company’s creditworthiness. Over 330 million businesses currently have one, and you can obtain a D-U-N-S number at no charge.

Any business seeking to register with Dun & Bradstreet must be an established legal entity within their respective state (i.e., LLC, C-Corp, S-Corp, etc.). Companies can register online by providing the following information:

  1. Legal Name of the Business
  2. Headquarters Name and Address
  3. The company’s physical address and mailing address
  4. Doing Business As (DBA) name, if applicable
  5. Phone Number
  6. Name and contact info of the business owner
  7. Number of employees
  8. If the business is home-based or has company offices 

Does Your Transcription Service Have An Employer Identification Number (EIN)?

Any company or organization needs an EIN from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), especially those with employees. An EIN is also nine digits and uses a unique pattern with the first two digits separated from the remaining seven digits (xx-xxxxxxx).

Businesses within the U.S. or its territories can apply for an EIN online on the IRS website. Also, the individual applying must have a valid Taxpayer Identification Number, such as an SSI, ITIN, or EIN.

Does Your Transcription Company Have a U.S. Bank Account?

If a transcription service provider conducts business in the U.S. and promotes confidential transcription services, it should have a bank account with a U.S.-based financial institution. 

Some transcription companies are based in foreign countries yet claim they are based in the U.S. by providing a U.S. mailing address and phone number. However, if a foreign transcription company doesn’t maintain accounts with a U.S.-based financial institution, you may incur additional fees to transfer payments. 

Legal and Medical Transcription Services Require CJIS and HIPAA Compliance

Transcription companies working on medical files must be HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) compliant to protect patient privacy.

Companies transcribing legal or law enforcement files for criminal law enforcement agencies must be CJIS (Criminal Justice Information Services) compliant. The FBI oversees the CJIS program, and companies must adhere to strict security guidelines when accessing or being privy to criminal files. 

Transcription Providers With CAGE Codes

Any company conducting business with the Department of Defense must also obtain a Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) code. CAGE codes are assigned and created by the Defense Logistics Agency and managed by the DoD.  

Human Transcription Service Is Best?

Artificial Intelligence (AI) software continues to grow, especially in the transcription industry. While AI transcription works for some basic projects, sensitive or complex transcription projects with multiple speakers in less than ideal recording environments usually require human transcribers. 

Ask your transcription provider if their employees or contracted transcribers undergo criminal background checks and are U.S.-based. Sensitive audio and video files should NEVER be transcribed by transcriptionists who are not properly vetted and qualified. 

Why A Secure Transcription Service Is Important

Reputable transcription companies treat every file with the utmost care. A quality company also employs human transcriptionists and has a comprehensive information security program.

The best way to confirm the security measures for audio transcription services and whether they are a U.S.-based company is to call and speak to a management team member. Most are happy to sign the appropriate non-disclosure agreements to alleviate security concerns.