Private medical information found easily via online search
A data-loss-protection company researcher found recently that the personal medical data of almost 300,000 Californians was available online in unsecured format and could be accessed through an Internet search, according to various media sources.
Southern California Medical-Legal Consultants, a firm that represents health-care providers seeking payment from patients receiving workers’ compensation, put the records on a website that was not password-protected and did not prohibit search engines from indexing the pages.
Available data included insurance forms, physicians’ notes and social-security numbers. The firm, which was under the impression that only its employees could access the information, now requires a password for accessing the information.
The incident underlines ongoing concerns about electronic health records (EHRs) and the possibility of breaches of confidential material.