Breach, Threat Management, Data Security

Staffing agency employee allegedly distributes patient information illegally

The Detroit Medical Center (DMC) has alerted more than 1,500 of a data breach caused by an employee who shared personal information with unauthorized individuals.

How many victims? 1,529 patients who were treated at a DMC facility between March 2015 and May 2016. DMC consists of eight hospital and institutes, including the Children's Hospital of Michigan, Detroit Receiving Hospital, Harper University Hospital, Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital, Hutzel Women's Hospital, Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan, Sinai-Grace Hospital and DMC Heart Hospital.

What type of information? An official press release issued by DMC on July 13 does not specify what information was stolen.

What happened? A staffing agency used by DMC recently alerted the health care provider that one of its employees allegedly supplied patients' health information to unauthorized individuals who are unaffiliated with DMC.

What was the response? DMC said that it terminated the agency employee, revoked the former employee's access to its computer systems, reviewed all electronic health records that the employee had access to; modified its monitoring programs to avoid future breaches, and filed an official complaint with law enforcement. Additionally, DMC is offering its affected patients free credit monitoring.

Source: Detroit Medical Center.

Bradley Barth

As director of community content at CyberRisk Alliance, Bradley Barth develops content for SC Media online conferences and events, as well as video/multimedia projects. For nearly six years, he wrote and reported for SC Media as deputy editor and, before that, senior reporter. He was previously a program executive with the tech-focused PR firm Voxus. Past journalistic experience includes stints as business editor at Executive Technology, a staff writer at New York Sportscene and a freelance journalist covering travel and entertainment. In his spare time, Bradley also writes screenplays.

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