Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Identity Thief Uses Chicago Hospital Patients' Data to Pay Bills

A hospital employee was charged with identity theft for paying her bills with data stolen from hospital patients. The Chicago resident is charged with 1 charge each of aggravated identity theft and identity theft and faces up to 7 years in prison.

Police say that all victims had been patients at the hospital and that the suspect had opened electric, gas or telephone service in the victim's names. The employee had been with the hospital for 4 years when municipal utility officials reported “suspicious credit card activity” involving her water bill payments.
"An employee of a Chicago hospital has been charged with using the personal information of patients, some of them being treated for cancer, to pay personal bills." - Office of Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez
Working with the credit card company the police determined that the credit cards transactions had originated at her home or a laboratory at the Chicago hospital. The resulting search of the suspects home yielded credit card numbers, Social Security numbers, and birth dates of more than 50 patients.
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Sources:
(a) Hospital Employee Charged With Theft Of Patients' Personal Information - Cook County State's Attorney's Office, May 14, 2012
(b) Northwestern Memorial employee charged with theft of patients' identities - Chicago Tribune, May 15, 2012
(b) Northwestern hospital worker charged with stealing patients’ identities - Chicago Sun Times, May 15, 2012

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