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Risk

10/25/2010
02:54 PM
George V. Hulme
George V. Hulme
Commentary
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More Patient Data Dumps

Yet another case where patient medical records are left in a dumpster and out in plain sight.

Yet another case where patient medical records are left in a dumpster and out in plain sight.What is it going to take to ensure hospitals and medical facilities properly dispose of patient records? NewsChannel4, KFOR.com in Oklahoma City reports that a resident found dumped patient records from at least two different offices.

Within each folder they found oncology patient record details on children and their parents. The news station says it retrieved all of the medical files and then contacted both medical offices.

It's quite possible that the firm the offices use to dispose of their records failed to properly shred them. The video of the news report is below:

 

Unfortunately, these types of incidents are not uncommon. We recently covered an Urgent Care that was fined $50,000 for a similar dump. And we've noted others occurring in Monicello, NY, Chattanooga, TN, and Port Lucie, FL.

Security firm McAfee recently had breaches that involved Social Security numbers between January 2009 and this October analyzed to rank the most dangerous locations for one to leave their Social Security number. The breach data was sourced from the Identity Theft Resource Center, Privacy Rights Clearinghouse and the Open Security Foundation that involved Social Security number breaches from January 2009 - October 2010.

Turned out health care related offices took 3 of the top 10 slots. Third place was hospitals, seventh was medical related businesses (distributors, billing services, etc.), and tenth place tied with medical insurance firms and medical offices and clinics.

So hospitals and medical offices may not only be ideal places to pick up a new disease, they're also ideal for having your identity information stolen.

For my security and technology observations throughout the day, find me on Twitter.

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