CPAP Data Privacy - How to Protect your CPAP Machine

CPAP Data Privacy - How to Protect your CPAP Machine

CPAP devices have come a long way thanks to the progress of technology. CPAP machines have become more effective in treating obstructive sleep apnea. And, most are now capable of collecting data about sleep therapy and its effectiveness. We take a look at how to protect your sensitive CPAP data in this post about CPAP data privacy.

Collecting data about sleep therapy has numerous benefits. It allows doctors and patients to review and evaluate the success or shortcomings of the patient’s CPAP therapy. These evaluations allow for more informed decision-making. They can also lead to changes that more efficiently treat an individual’s sleep apnea.

The Risk in CPAP Data Privacy

However, this new wave of technology comes with risks as well. Medical devices that collect data, like most new CPAP devices like the ResMed AirSense10, are essentially compiling sensitive medical information about individuals using the device. Additionally, many manufacturer websites allow patients to register online, but those registrations generally require the collection of personal information. Unfortunately, such information can become the target of hackers, who may seek to access that information if there are vulnerabilities in the device’s hardware.

While this might be unnerving, the good news is that major CPAP manufacturers are well aware of these sensitivities. They take proactive steps to ensure the security of patients’ data. For example, both ResMed and Philips (for instance the DreamStation Auto) utilize security technologies to protect user data. They also provide detailed articles on how they use any personal data that is collected. Both manufacturers also provide contact information where you can inquire about the safety of your data and learn more about the precautions they use.

How to Protect you CPAP Data Privacy

There are a few other things you can do on your own to protect your CPAP data:

  • When registering with websites or phone applications, be sure to strong and random passwords with various capital letters and symbols.
  • Use different passwords for different applications, so that if one password is hacked, others will still be protected.
  • It is also not a bad idea to frequently change or update these passwords.
  • If you use a mobile device to monitor sleep patterns, also be sure to enable the password function on it so that it is adequately secured in the event it is lost or stolen.
  • Keep an eye out for software updates for not only your computers and phones, but also for any mobile apps associated with your CPAP machine. Often times, these updates include security updates that focus on fending off the latest security threats.
  • Finally, be wary of providing personal data while using public internet (such as in your local coffee shop or at the library), and never share that information with unfamiliar emails or texts.

By engaging in a few simple practices, you can better protect your personal data linked to your CPAP device and better ensure CPAP Data Privacy.

Chris Vasta is the president of The CPAP Shop and an expert in sleep and respiratory therapy. He often provides insights on product design and functionality on various manufacturers’ prototypes.