You can use the built-in encryption of Microsoft Office to protect documents containing PHI or other confidential information in any situation where the information should be protected. For example, use encryption when storing confidential documents or sending confidential information to non-mednet email addresses.
You can send encrypted documents as attachments in email.Never include the password in the same email as the encrypted document. Use an alternative means of sharing the password such as another email or ask the email recipient to call you for the password or vice versa.
You can also burn encrypted documents to CDs, post them to web sites, or FTP them. Never send the password with the encrypted document but deliver it via a separate channel such as email or phone.
Always use strong passwords. Remember the password because if you forget it, there is no way to recover the password or the information in the document. Do not store passwords near the encrypted documents.