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ericnixmd10364 asked ·

HIPAA Setting - Call Quality, Bandwidth Requirements, Etc.

I saw where activating the HIPAA setting activates TLS/SRTP calls.

1.  What effect will this have on bandwidth and call quality?
2.  How secure is communication without TLS/SRTP?
3.  Will this setting make it more difficult to place calls on public wifi with the smartphone app?
4.  Is communication secure over public wifi without the HIPAA setting activated? (i.e., is there some sort of base encryption already without the HIPAA setting?)
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saadetswift16514 avatar image
saadetswift16514 answered ·
Hey there!

Thanks to some engineers, they were able to provide the following information:
  1. TLS does not affect bandwidth or call quality. 
  2. Calls are still secure based on your network's security settings.
  3. TLS does not affect smartphone calls using the RC app.
  4. If you would like,TLS/SRTP can be enabled without HIPAA by request.

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ericnixmd10364 answered ·
Thanks Saadet.  I have HIPAA enabled, but wanted to see if it affects performance at all.

Regarding #2 (calls are still secure based on your network's security settings), if I'm on a public wifi that is not encrypted, can someone intercept the packets and recompose the conversation?  I know it would be difficult to do this, but if there is any possibility then I definitely need to keep the HIPAA setting enabled for TLS/SRTP encryption.
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You're welcome!

That I can't really comment on as I'm not a hacker :P plus, it's a public network. If you're concerned about it, then I would keep HIPAA enabled to be on the safe side. 
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ericnixmd10364 answered ·
So I'm guessing if HIPAA setting or TLS/SRTP isn't enabled, that any communication over a public wifi is susceptible to interception and reconstruction where someone can listen to your conversation.  In other words, there is no base encryption provided at all by the RingCentral Phone app and the RingCentral server unless TLS/SRTP is enabled.

Yes, that confirms I will continue to enable the HIPAA setting.
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Again, I'm not completely sure. If you want to learn more about things like that, I would suggest asking your Account Manager if they could gather more details from an Engineer who is more qualified to answer questions about security and encryption. Because I'm sure you'll have a few follow up questions :) 
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oncallanswer3873 answered ·
We are an answering service for 140 Doctors and providers. Enabling HIPPA conduit has not had any effect on our quality of calls. 
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