First Selectman Ellen Scalettar recently visited AuthAir, a Woodbridge start-up that makes security software for the medical industry. This visit by the First Selectman was one of many designed to create a stronger bond between Town Hall and the Town’s business community and to strengthen economic development in Woodbridge. Additionally, the Town’s Economic Development Commission has been inviting new and expanding businesses to its monthly meetings in order to learn about those businesses and why they chose Woodbridge.
AuthAir develops specialized computer software for medical offices that allows staff to log in and log out of computers without manually entering a password. Employees wear or carry a “token” that automatically logs in the token’s owner when near their computer and logs them out when they walk away from the computer. Soon AuthAir plans to release a phone app that could replace the tokens.
The company’s program makes it easier for doctors and dentists to comply with HIPAA (the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), which prohibits the exposure of medical records. Remembering passwords and logging in and out of computers can be a hassle for medical staff. For example, if a staff member is wearing gloves and touches a non-sterile item, like a computer, he or she needs to replace the gloves. If a staff member is reading a record on a computer screen and is called away to a patient, they must first close the record and log out of the computer to protect the medical record.
“We’ve done studies showing that practitioners spend 17 to 21 minutes per day logging in and out of computers,” cofounder and CEO Yaron Baitch explained to Scalettar. The program also aggregates data and can be used to help businesses become more efficient.
Baitch is a Woodbridge resident and Amity Regional High School graduate. When he started a business he knew he wanted it to be based in Woodbridge.
“I love it when I hear that another smart and growing business has chosen to make Woodbridge its home,” Scalettar said.
The venture capital firm backing AuthAir suggested that the company be based in Boston. “We said no,” recounts co-founder and Chief Technical Officer Mo Etesam. Etesam says he can easily find talent from recent graduates of the area’s many universities. “We love it here,” says Baitch. “This is a good environment, we have room to grow and it’s centrally located for everybody.”
Baitch and Etesam started AuthAir two and a half years ago. The company has been so successful that already they’ve moved into larger office space to accommodate their growing staff. In the last year the company has grown from four to 15 employees.
In addition, AuthAir has the benefit of three student interns from Amity High School. “They’re so smart we aren’t even using college interns this year,” said Baitch. The students are designing a product that will soon be launched by the company.