Elevated PC Rights Procedure

Overview

This document presents an overview of elevated (administrator) rights on HIT-managed PCs, including both permanent and temporary rights. It then describes the procedures for obtaining these rights.

Purpose

This document is provided to guide HIT customers who need PC administrative rights in the procedures necessary to obtain these rights.

Scope

An overview of elevated rights on HIT-managed PCs is presented. Procedures for obtaining both temporary and permanent administrative rights is included in this document.

Description

In an effort to ensure that our desktop workstation environment is fully HIPAA compliant, HSTS is providing customers with a secure, managed PC. We work to ensure that software installed on PCs we manage is as reliable and secure from data loss or theft as possible.

Objectives

In an effort to ensure that our desktop workstation environment is fully HIPAA compliant, HSTS is providing customers with a secure, managed PC. We work to ensure that software installed on PCs we manage is as reliable and secure from data loss or theft as possible. Our desktop management software allows us to distribute software, including security and other updates, to a large number of PCs in a fast, efficient manner. Our virus protection software checks for new virus updates daily.

This secure computing environment can be compromised by changes to the operating system or software that HSTS provides. New software installed without thorough testing can open security holes that can be exploited to damage the PC or expose sensitive data. Changes to the desktop management or other software can prevent HSTS from applying important updates necessary to prevent damage or theft of data.

For these reasons, PCs on the Secure Clinical Subnet are configured to protect against inadvertent or intentional changes that may impair the level of security. The customer does not have the ability to install new software or change system settings. If a new software installation is required, two methods are available to our customers:

  • A Service Request may be placed to have an HSTS technician evaluate the software and perform the installation, if it is determined that HIPAA-compliance will not be undermined by the addition of the software.
  • Customers may contact the HSTS Help Desk and obtain, on a temporary basis, the necessary rights to perform the installation themselves. The Help Desk will validate that the software is approved for installation in our environment, and this ability to install software will be removed at midnight the same day. Under certain circumstances, the rights may be extended.

HSTS recognizes that some customers have duties that require the installation or update of software, or saving of data to secured areas on the local PC disk, on a regular basis. To accommodate this requirement, the customer can be set up with this capability, either on a temporary or on-going basis.

Procedures

If you wish to obtain elevated rights, please follow these procedures:

  1. Be sure that you do indeed require elevated PC rights. HSTS or your departmental IT support can usually install software for you, so that you do not need elevated rights. Software which appears to require elevated Administrator rights to run can often be run simply by adjusting folder or other permissions. We recommend that you contact the HSTS Help Desk or your departmental IT support first before requesting elevated PC rights.
  2. If you have verified that you require elevated PC rights, submit an Elevated Rights Customer Agreement form. This form details the guidelines and responsibilities that accompany granting of elevated rights. Submission of the form indicates that you have agreed to adhere to the guidelines contained therein, but does not grant elevated rights on a particular PC. In order to obtain elevated rights once the form is submitted, proceed to step III.
  3. Once the Agreement form is on file, submit a Service Request or contact your departmental IT support. If your need is urgent, you may contact the HSTS Help Desk to obtain temporary elevated rights.
  4. To ensure that each manager is aware of the risks posed by workstations in their area on which elevated rights have been granted, your supervisor will be notified that you have obtained elevated rights.

Document Supporting Resources