George Jenkins, the writer for the “I’ve Been Mugged” blog (http://ivebeenmugged.typepad.com) writes about a recent survey release discussing medical identity theft. While this has been going on for a while (I had my first case involving electronic MedID theft 8 years ago) it serves as an excellent proactive warning: THINK about any and all information systems that you give your ID to and QUESTION the flow of information. We are not living in an age where blind trust/acceptance is acceptable.
The study was performed by the Poneman Institute and sponsored by Experian. One of the Privacy analysts with Poneman was quoted (emphasis added):
“The two results that stood out to me were the more than $20,000 average cost to consumers who suffered ID/credit fraud as a result of a medical data breach, as well as the potential for physical harm to those who have their medical records ‘polluted’ due to healthcare fraud,” says Mike Spinney, a senior privacy analyst at Ponemon Institute.
The residual issue of “physical harm’ due to a corruption of medical records gives plenty to ponder – especially given the efforts to aggregate medical records in an electronic environment. Also particularly interesting are the number of people that were aware they had a problem and did not report it. I wonder about the psychology of that.
By the way – George is an excellently informed writer on these types of stories, and his blog is definitely worth a follow.
George Jenkins’ Link: