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Can I use Marketo and be HIPAA compliant?

Can I use Marketo and be HIPAA compliant?

We sometimes get asked if  Marketo can be used in a HIPAA compliant manner. With last month's news that Adobe acquired Marketo for $4.75B, it's a timely occasion to see if Marketo is HIPAA compliant or not. We know the HIPAA industry is vast so we can empathize with just how many people need to use cloud services in this sector.

Today we will determine if Marketo offers HIPAA compliant email for marketing or not. SEE ALSO: HIPAA Breaches and Cloud Providers




Marketo is a software company focused on account-based marketing. This includes email, mobile, social, digital ads, web management, and analytics.


SEE ALSO: My Continuing Education via SaaStr CSS Speaking Series


Marketo and the business associate agreement


We’ve previously talked about how a business associate agreement (BAA) is a written contract between a covered entity and a business associate. It is required by law for HIPAA compliance. We checked Marketo's site and quickly found its Healthcare Marketing Solution page. While it did list prominent customers like GE Healthcare, Boston Children's Hospital, and AllScripts, we could not find any mention of the company's willingness to actually sign a BAA. We also checked the User Forum, Security, Privacy Policy, and Legal and Copyright Notices pages. None of them had conclusive information about Marketo signing a BAA or not. Of note, we did notice in Marketo's Privacy Policy:


Section 12. Sensitive Information: We ask that you not send us or disclose any sensitive Personal Data (e.g., social security numbers, information related to racial or ethnic origin, sexual orientation, political opinions, religion or other beliefs, health, biometrics or genetic characteristics, criminal background, or trade union membership) on or through the Sites or via other means.


While this is not a direct mention of protected health information (PHI), you can infer that Marketo did not design its platform to store sensitive information like PHI. According to HIPAA,  even just a name is PHI if it is in any way associated with a healthcare provider—such as in a marketing email coming from your practice.


Does Marketo offer HIPAA compliant service?


The BAA is a key component to HIPAA compliance between a covered entity and a business associate. We learned that Marketo markets itself as a company that services the US Healthcare market, yet at the same time it is vague about its willingness to sign a BAA.



It's inconclusive if Marketo is HIPAA compliant or not.


HIPAA email marketing tools comparison


To meet the unmet need for HIPAA compliant email marketing, we created Paubox Marketing. It is the only solution that will:


  • Sign a BAA
  • Provide military-grade encryption
  • Allow you to include PHI in your marketing emails
  • Allow patients to read your emails directly from their inbox with no extra steps


In addition, Paubox Marketing is HITRUST CSF certified. Compared to the standard marketing tools, Paubox Marketing is the best option for maintaining HIPAA compliance while harnessing the power of personalized email marketing.


SEE ALSO: Why Paubox Marketing is the Best HIPAA Email Marketing Solution Available


Company Will they sign a BAA? Can you send PHI?
Adobe Campaign NO NO
Blue Orchid Marketing NO NO
Campaign Monitor NO NO
Campaigner NO NO
Drip NO NO
Emma NO NO
GetResponse NO NO
Hubspot NO NO
L-Soft NO NO
Mad Mimi (GoDaddy) NO NO
Mailchimp NO NO
MailerLite NO NO
Marketo (Adobe) NO NO
Salesforce Pardot NO NO
SendGrid (Twilio) NO NO
Yesware NO NO
ActiveCampaign YES NO
Constant Contact YES NO
Infusionsoft by Keap YES NO
Salesforce Marketing Cloud YES NO
Eloqua (Oracle) YES YES **
Paubox Marketing YES YES


(** To use Oracle Eloqua in a HIPAA compliant manner, recipients receive two emails for every message you send. Patients must also log into a secure message center to view your message— it does not appear in their inboxes. This creates friction and makes your patients less likely to read your marketing email.)


Try Paubox Marketing for free and make your email marketing HIPAA compliant today.

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