As a member of the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) Listserv, we receive notifications often. However, they usually aren’t as impactful as this one was, to our business and yours. The image may be grainy, but please see below for the warning from OCR.
OCR has been made aware of postcards being sent to health care organizations disguised as official OCR communications, claiming to be notices of a mandatory HIPAA compliance risk assessment. The postcards have a Washington, D.C. return address, and the sender uses the title “Secretary of Compliance, HIPAA Compliance Division.” The postcard is addressed to the health care organization’s HIPAA compliance officer and prompts recipients to visit a URL, call, or email to take immediate action on a HIPAA Risk Assessment. The link directs individuals to a non-governmental website marketing consulting services.
HIPAA covered entities and business associates should alert their workforce members to this misleading communication. This communication is from a private entity – it is NOT an HHS/OCR communication. Covered entities and business associates can verify that a communication is from OCR by looking for the OCR address or email address on any communication that purports to be from OCR. The addresses for OCR’s HQ and Regional Offices are available on the OCR website at https://www.hhs.gov/ocr/about-us/contact-us/index.html, and all OCR email addresses will end in @hhs.gov. If organizations have additional questions or concerns, please send an email to: [email protected].
Suspected incidents of individuals posing as federal law enforcement should be reported to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
You can read more about instances like this (and what to watch out for) on our previous post HERE.