Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Ontario Cancer Screening Records Go Missing

Ontario's Privacy Commissioner is looking into reports that the whereabouts for up to 15 screening activity reports is unknown.   These reports contain the Personal Health Information (PHI) of up to 6,490 Ontarians.

The Privacy Commissioner's office is still investigating the status of 11 other reports that could jeopardise the PHI of another 5,440 individuals.

The records contain information such as names, birth dates, gender, health card numbers and cancer screening test information.   The whereabouts of the documents has been unknown since their being sent to doctors during the February - March 2011 time frame.
"Medical test results rank among the most sensitive personal information about an individual," said Commissioner Cavoukian. "I am astounded that such a loss could take place. The first step is to minimize any harm by locating as many of these reports as possible. As part of our investigation, we will be looking at steps that can be taken to ensure that this type of breach doesn't happen again.

Notification to potential victims will be sent in the coming weeks.

Ed. note: It's rather scary that at the moment, we don't know if the data has actually been lost in transit or simply misplaced upon being received.  What we do know is that the information lost pertains to individuals ranging in age from 50 to 75 years old.  That is a prime target age range for scammers and fraud artists.

 

 

References:

http://www.ipc.on.ca/images/Resources/2011-07-26-cancer-screening-information-nr.pdf

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/story/2011/07/26/cancer-records-missing.html