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UHN Laptop Stolen; Patient Data Accessible


June 1, 2010

University Health Network (UHN) has informed patients and the privacy commissioner that a laptop containing the personal health information of about 20,000 surgical patients was stolen from an employee's car. A UHN press release states that the laptop's encryption had failed, making accessible names, types of surgeries and, in some cases, phone numbers of surgical patients who used the hospital system between 2004 and 2010. UHN has deemed that the laptop was likely stolen for its resale value, not for the data it contains and that the risk for misuse of the data is low. The system will send letters to patients whose phone numbers are on the laptop and will review its procedures and intensify employee education.
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