Report: Electronic Health Information Under Attack

Redspin report finds two-thirds of all records breached resulted from laptops or other portable media devices

February 10, 2011

2 Min Read


CARPINTERIA, Calif., Feb. 9, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Redspin, a leading provider of HIPAA risk analysis and IT security assessment services, today released an analysis of all protected health information breaches publicly recorded between August 2009 and the end of 2010, as per the interim final breach notification of the HITECH Act. The findings were based on 225 security breaches affecting 6,067,751 individuals.

Redspin's analysis focuses on single breaches affecting more than 500 people. Such large scale breaches must be reported on a timely basis to individuals, the media and the HHS Secretary according to the HHS Office of Civil Rights' regulations. The regulations also require business associates of covered entities to notify the covered entity of such breaches at or by the business associate.

Selected findings from the report include:

-- 43 states, D.C. and Puerto Rico have suffered at least one breach affecting over 500 individuals. -- ~27,000 individuals, on average, are affected by a breach. -- 78% of all records breached are the result of 10 incidents, five of which are the result of theft of common storage media e.g. desktop computers, network servers, and portable devices. -- 61% of breaches are a result of malicious intent. -- ~66,000 individuals, on average, are affected by a single breach of portable media. -- 40% of records breached involved business associates.

"Redspin is committed to helping covered entities and business associates properly safeguard private health information," said John Abraham, President and CEO of Redspin. "We hope that by highlighting these findings we can help healthcare organizations proactively address areas of highest risk."

A full copy of the report is available at

About Redspin, Inc.

Redspin delivers comprehensive security testing, risk management and compliance solutions. For hospitals and other covered entities, Redspin provides HIPAA risk analysis and IT security assessment services that meet the security requirements of the EHR meaningful use incentive program. Most importantly, Redspin helps keep protected health information safe and critical IT systems secure. The company's expertise, objectivity and business acumen have made Redspin a trusted partner to healthcare and other industries for over a decade.

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