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July 7, 2024

HITRUST Automation with Vanta

HITRUST is an increasingly popular standard that's hard to achieve. Learn how to automate and streamline HITRUST with Workstreet and Vanta.
Written by:
Travis Good
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SOC 2 has become table stakes, at least in North America. At Workstreet, we work with pre-product and pre-revenue companies working towards SOC 2 because the market demands it.

For some companies, especially those in healthcare and other regulated industries, HITRUST certification has emerged as a gold standard for demonstrating information security practices. In this post, we'll explore what HITRUST is, why it matters, and how Vanta's new exclusive license for HITRUST can streamline your path to certification.

What is HITRUST?

HITRUST is a comprehensive framework that combines requirements from multiple regulations and standards, including HIPAA, PCI DSS, ISO, NIST, and more. It provides a standardized approach to managing information security and privacy risks.

Key features of HITRUST:

  • HITRUST leverages a risk-based approach
  • HITRUST is scalable and customizable to an organization's specific needs
  • HITRUST provides a common security framework across multiple regulations
  • HITRUST is scored and companies can hyper-target areas to improve scores

HITRUST offers three levels of certification, each designed to meet different organizational needs and maturity levels:

  1. e1 (Essentials): This is the entry-level certification, ideal for smaller organizations or those new to HITRUST. It focuses on the most critical security controls and provides a solid foundation for information security practices. The e1 assessment is less complex and can be completed more quickly than higher levels.
  2. i1 (Implemented): The intermediate level, i1, builds upon the e1 controls and adds more depth. It's suitable for organizations with more mature security programs or those dealing with more sensitive data. The i1 assessment includes a broader range of controls and requires more rigorous validation.
  3. r2 (Risk-based): This is the most comprehensive HITRUST certification level. It's designed for larger organizations or those in highly regulated industries that require the highest level of assurance. The r2 assessment is fully customizable based on an organization's specific risk factors and includes the most extensive set of controls.

Each level progressively increases in complexity and depth, allowing organizations to choose the certification that best aligns with their security needs, regulatory requirements, and business objectives. This tiered approach makes HITRUST certification accessible to a wide range of organizations while still maintaining high standards for information security.

HITRUST vs. Other Security Frameworks

While HITRUST is a comprehensive framework, it's important to understand how it compares to other widely-used security standards:


  • Scope: HITRUST is more comprehensive, covering a broader range of controls and regulations, especially in healthcare. SOC 2 focuses primarily on service organizations and their data handling practices.
  • Customization: HITRUST offers flexibility with its tiered approach (e1, i1, r2), while SOC 2 has Trust Services Criteria and the ability to scope controls in and out.
  • Industry Focus: HITRUST is heavily tailored to healthcare, whereas SOC 2 is industry-agnostic.
  • Certification: HITRUST provides a certification, while SOC 2 results in an attestation report.

HITRUST vs. ISO 27001

  • Structure: HITRUST provides more prescriptive guidance, while ISO 27001 offers a more general framework for implementing an Information Security Management System (ISMS).
  • Regulatory Alignment: HITRUST explicitly maps to various regulations, especially in healthcare. ISO 27001 is more generic and requires additional effort to align with specific regulatory requirements.
  • Assessment Process: HITRUST has a standardized assessment and scoring methodology. ISO 27001 certification involves a more subjective audit process.
  • Global Recognition: ISO 27001 is more globally recognized, while HITRUST is more prominent in the United States, particularly in healthcare.

We find companies typically start with SOC 2 or ISO and progress to HITRUST.

Why HITRUST Matters

HITRUST does carry weight in the market. People who know it, know how rigorous it is to get.

  1. Demonstrates Commitment to Security: HITRUST certification shows customers, partners, and regulators that you take data protection seriously.
  2. Competitive Advantage: Many healthcare organizations now require HITRUST certification from their vendors, making it a key differentiator in the market.
  3. Comprehensive Coverage: By addressing multiple regulatory requirements, HITRUST can simplify compliance efforts across various standards.
  4. Risk Mitigation: The rigorous HITRUST framework helps organizations identify and address potential security vulnerabilities.

Vanta's Exclusive Partnership with HITRUST

Vanta recently announced its exclusive partnership with HITRUST, a significant milestone in the world of compliance automation. This collaboration brings together HITRUST's industry-leading security framework with Vanta's cutting-edge automation technology, creating a powerful solution for organizations seeking HITRUST certification.

Key highlights of this partnership include:

  1. First Automated HITRUST Solution: Vanta now offers the first and only automated compliance solution for HITRUST Assessment, streamlining the certification process.
  2. Seamless Integration: The partnership allows for seamless integration of HITRUST requirements into Vanta's existing compliance platform, providing a unified approach to security and compliance management.
  3. Accelerated Certification: By leveraging Vanta's automation capabilities, organizations can significantly reduce the time and effort required to achieve HITRUST certification.
  4. Enhanced Accessibility: This partnership makes HITRUST certification more accessible to a broader range of organizations, particularly those in the healthcare and technology sectors.
  5. Continuous Compliance: With over 300 integrations, Vanta continuously collects evidence from your tech stack, ensuring ongoing compliance.

This exclusive partnership underscores Vanta's commitment to providing innovative, efficient, and comprehensive compliance solutions to its customers, further solidifying its position as a leader in the compliance automation industry. It also continues Vanta's market-leading speed to market with new features and frameworks.

One of the coolest things about Vanta's new HITRUST partnership is that it opens to the doors to HITRUST for more companies. Companies do not typicallys start with HITRUST as their first compliance framework or first external audit. For existing Vanta customers, HITRUST is now more accessible as they can reuse the work they've done for SOC 2, HIPAA, ISO 27001 or other frameworks.

Why Companies Should Use Vanta for HITRUST

Want to do HTRUST but you're concerned about the effort or new tools you need to learn? Enter Vanta with a new way for companies to approach HITRUST certification. Here's why Vanta is a great choice for your HITRUST journey:

Unparalleled Ease of Use

Vanta isn't just another compliance tool; it's a software business dedicated to building exceptional solutions. When it comes to HITRUST, the difference is clear:

  • Building and operating a HITRUST program on Vanta is 10 times easier than using MyCSF.
  • Vanta has built-in Compliance Ops, a feature noticeably absent in MyCSF.
  • As a software-first company, Vanta's user experience is designed for efficiency and clarity.

Cost-Effective Bundled Audits

HITRUST assessments can be a significant expense, but Vanta offers a compelling financial advantage:

  • While typical HITRUST assessments are quoted at $25,000 or more, Vanta bundles this service for just $15,000.
  • This bundled price includes the HITRUST CSF license fee, providing immediate cost savings.
  • Vanta simplifies the process further by having auditors handle the data transfer from Vanta to MyCSF for the actual assessment.

Seamless Repeatability

HITRUST rarely stands alone in a company's compliance efforts. Vanta recognizes this reality:

  • Vanta enables you to manage HITRUST alongside your other compliance frameworks.
  • Tests conducted in Vanta are repeatable, eliminating the need to recreate everything in MyCSF.
  • The platform allows for easy export and import of data, a process your auditor can manage effortlessly.

Powerful Automation

In today's fast-paced business environment, automation is key. Vanta delivers where others fall short:

  • Unlike MyCSF, which offers no automations, Vanta provides robust integration capabilities.
  • These integrations streamline test coverage not just for HITRUST, but for other frameworks as well.
  • Automation reduces manual work, minimizes errors, and accelerates the compliance process.

Very few companies build or manage their security and compliance programs on the HITRUST MyCSF. Now, for the first time, you can leverage a modern automation platform to build and manage your HITRUST program effectively. Vanta isn't just an alternative - it's a new approach to HITRUST certification that saves time, reduces costs, and simplifies the entire process.

Go for it!

HITRUST certification is a great way to demonstrate your commitment to data security and privacy. With Vanta's automated solution, achieving and maintaining HITRUST compliance becomes more accessible and efficient than ever before. Whether you're just starting your HITRUST journey or looking to streamline your existing processes, Vanta offers the tools and support you need to succeed.

Ready to take the next step in your HITRUST certification? Reach out to us and we'll be happy to talk you through what the journey toHITRUST looks like for you.