South Carolina Medicaid employee leaks recipient data

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South Carolina Medicaid data was leaked after the information was transferred to a personal email account.

How many victims? 228,000.

What type of personal information? Names, addresses, phone numbers, and Social Security numbers, which also double as Medicaid ID numbers.

What happened? South Carolina Medicaid employee, Christopher Lykes Jr., 36, improperly transferred information on more than 228,000 people to his personal email account. The data was compiled over several months.

What was the response? Lykes was arrested and charged with violating medical confidentiality laws. He also was fired. New security measures are in place, and victims will be notified and offered free identity theft protection services.

Details: After an investigation launched earlier this month by the state Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), officials concluded that the information was transferred to one other person, apparently intentionally, though they are unsure of the motive. There are no reports that the information has so far been misused. The state Law Enforcement Division is investigating.

Quote: “I've woken up every morning for the past week praying somehow I could find a reason or the individual who committed the act would tell us this is just a big mistake,” said Anthony Keck, director of HHS.

Source: myrtlebeachonline.com, The State, "SC agency says information leaked on 228K people," April 19, 2012.

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