Wednesday, February 18, 2009

CVS may have "dumpster leak" of pharmacy info

CVS Pharmacies reached an agreement with the Texas Attorney General regarding proper training of employees and proper information safeguards of prescription information.

Apparently the case occurred when some pharmacy records, including customer identifying information and credit card numbers were dumped behind a Texas store.

However, no cases of actual compromise of customers are known to have occurred.

Pharmacy information would be protected by HIPAA as well as other privacy laws. However, absolute protection is difficult. Prescriptions are often renewed by fax or phone, and often given to relatives of the elderly or infirm.

The KLTV Jacksonville story is here.

I had an incident last year where a CVS store gave me some of someone else's pictures on a photo CD. It's possible that such a situation could compromise another customer's privacy.

Friday, February 13, 2009

CNBC: 40% of ID theft occurs within the family. Really?

CNBC’s “On the Money” Thursday night (Feb. 12) mentioned the problem of “financial adultery” where a spouse spends all the couple’s money on trysts, or where a spouse is trusted to pay the bills and does not. The show also gave an amazing statistic: 40% of all identity theft occurs within the family.

That would somewhat mitigate the concerns over shredding documents and responding to phishing emails. I’m not sure that I really believe it.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

A Texas school district has a major leak in employee personal information security

A “leak” from a major Texas school district has become the latest embarrassing source of employer-related identity theft. Over 50 employees (including teachers) and relatives of the Irving Independent School District were compromised, as police found after a woman tried to open a Sears account in the name of an elementary school teacher. The woman apparently had social security numbers and other personal information of many other employers and family members. It appears so far that the information could have been stolen from dumpster diving or printed materials, and not through the Internet or computer applications.

The story appeared in the Dallas Morning News Feb. 4, authored by Katherine Leal Unmuth of the paper, link here.

Irving is one of the “mid-cities” between Dallas and Ft. Worth, along highway 183. Texas Stadium, until now the home of the Dallas Cowboys, is located there.

It’s good to see that Sears was apparently diligent alert enough to catch the problem. I did a lot of my shopping there (even personal computers) when I lived in Dallas in the 1980s.