Monday, May 21, 2012

Medicare Patient Identities Stolen by Healthcare Insider

Medicare patients in Idaho and Missouri had their patient records stolen by an employee of a large healthcare organization. The organization has notified only 68 patients believed to have had their identities stolen.

Disappointingly, "despite and exhaustive effort" it is unable to identify other patients who may be at risk. Unfortunately, the inability to identify patients affected by a breach is all too common because of the number of disparate medical systems involved and the lack of good data analytics.

For this reason hospitals are turning to Identity and Access Intelligence (IAI) solutions that can proactively identify breaches and inappropriate access that violates patient data privacy, even by authorized employees. Such IAI services can quickly and easily identify all the patients affected.
"A former employee, during the course of his employment, may have accessed information in a database in a way that was inconsistent with his job duties." - Company Press Release
Information stolen included full names, Social Security numbers, addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth and Medicare Health Insurance Claim Numbers.

NOTE: This healthcare organization had a previous breach by an employee involving over 150 students at the University of California, Irvine. The insider stole tax rebates by filling false tax returns in the names of the student using information stolen from the patient records.
Download a white paper on patient privacy breach detection. Learn how to IAI proactively identifies unauthorized breaches of patient data privacy, even by authorized users - with no hardware and no on-site software.
Sources:
(a) Some UnitedHealthcare Customers Have Identities Stolen - Local New 68, May 18, 2012
(a) Update: UnitedHealthcare notifies Medicare members of data breach; company says 68 people in Missouri affected - Local New 68, May 18, 2012

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