Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Spector of Identity Theft at the Heart of the Matter

I didn't have time to comment on this but it was in todays privacy mail.

A Washington couple whose nephew spent a year cleaning up after his identity was stolen has "become very fussy" about protecting their privacy, reports the Yakima Herald. So when Aram and Marjorie Langhans noticed Aram's Social Security number (SSN) on a printout at the Yakima Heart Center recently, they requested its removal from the center's files. The center refused and denied treatment without the SSN. A center administrator said they collect patients' SSNs to help verify identity. But the Washington Attorney General's (AG) office said the Langhans were right to protect Aram's SSN. SSNs "have been compromised by employees in the healthcare sector...," said an AG spokesperson. "Anything a company can do to reduce access, we strongly encourage." Full Story

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