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The Security Rule

The HIPAA Security Rule establishes national standards to protect individuals’ electronic personal health information that is created, received, used, or maintained by a covered entity. The Security Rule requires appropriate administrative, physical and technical safeguards to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and security of electronic protected health information. 

The Security Rule is located at 45 CFR Part 160 and Subparts A and C of Part 164.  

View the combined regulation text of all HIPAA Administrative Simplification Regulations found at 45 CFR 160, 162, and 164.

Security Rule History

February 20, 2003 – Security Standards – Final Rule

August 12, 1998 – Security and Electronic Signature Standards - Proposed Rule

August 3, 2009 – View the Delegation of Authority Press Release

August 4, 2009 – Federal Register notice of the Delegation of Authority to OCR (74 FR 38630)

HHS Security Risk Assessment Tool

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and the HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) have jointly launched a HIPAA Security Risk Assessment Tool. The tool’s features make it useful in assisting small and medium-sized health care practices and business associates as they perform a risk assessment.

HHS Security Risk Assessment Tool

NIST HIPAA Security Rule Toolkit

The NIST HIPAA Security Toolkit Application is a self-assessment survey intended to help organizations better understand the requirements of the HIPAA Security Rule (HSR), implement those requirements, and assess those implementations in their operational environment.  A comprehensive user guide and instructions for using the application are available along with the HSR application.

NIST HSR Toolkit 

Risk Analysis Guidance

Additional Security Rule Guidance

See the Security Rule Guidance page for additional guidance.

Content created by Office for Civil Rights (OCR)
Content last reviewed on May 12, 2017
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