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20,000 Patients' Data Posted Online

DATA LOSS—U.S.

September 9, 2011

Stanford University's hospital has confirmed that the records of 20,000 emergency room patients were available online for almost a year. Names, diagnosis codes, account numbers, admission and discharge dates, among other data, were posted to a website that offers students assistance with schoolwork, reports The New York Times. The hospital informed local authorities and wrote letters to all affected patients, and the website removed the information. Healthcare security experts say the breach highlights the possible risks of allowing third-party contractors access to personal data. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, in the past two years, the medical data of about 11 million people has been breached. (Registration may be required to access this story.)
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