Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Providence Health Identity Theft of 365,000 Patients

this is an audio post - click to play

Special audio "alert" for patients and employees of Providence.

On New Years Eve, 2005, the confidential medical records of
365,000 current and former patients of Providence Home
Services, based in Portland, Oregon, were stolen from
an automobile containing computer backup disks and tapes.

Included in the patient information stolen, were:

  • Names
  • Addresses
  • Dates of birth
  • Health conditions
  • Drug Prescriptions

For 250,000 patients, the Social Security Number
were included and an unspecified number of individual
records even contained financial information.

Not just patients were affected by this theft of personal
identity information. 1,500 current and former employees
of Providence were also among the stolen records.

While it's still too soon to document how many actual cases
of identity theft have developed from the stolen information,
scam artists have already begun to attack using "pretexting".

Pretexting, works where a scam artist impersonates to be a
legitimate Providence employee by asking for the intended
victim's personal information such as social security number
or bank account so they can “verify” the stolen data.

So, our tip for today, is to avoid any pretext callers
and contact Providence directly for assistance.
Providence can be reached at 1-888-284-8997 or
on their website for more information and support options.


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