Laptop theft leads to compromised student health records

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The health records for 2,000 Fairfax County public school students in Virginia were compromised after a laptop containing personal information was stolen out of an employee's vehicle.

How many victims? 2,000 former and current students of Brookfield, Fairfax Villa and Navy elementary schools, Lanier and Rocky Run middle schools and Chantilly High School and Chantilly Academy.

What type of personal information? Names, school system identification numbers and medical conditions.

What happened? A laptop and paper records were stolen out of a vehicle belonging to a school nurse.  

What was the response? School officials notified the families of affected students on Monday. The school system's health department is reviewing security procedures with employees. The nurse, who was not identified, will face disciplinary action.

Details: The laptop was stolen out of the school nurse's vehicle on July 15. The nurse was authorized to have records in a car and at home, but the nurse violated protocol by failing to securely store files. According to policy, paper records should be kept in a locked briefcase separate from the laptop, and electronic files should be stored on encrypted portable drives and not the computer's hard drive.

Quote: “We are going above and beyond to make sure this doesn't happen again,” school district spokesman Glen Barbour said.

Source:, Washington Post, Stolen laptop contained 2,000 Fairfax student health records,” July 29, 2013.

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