University of Mississippi Medical Center Admits Security Breach

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The University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) recently posted a notice on its Web site warning of a recent data breach that may have exposed patient health and personal information (h/t PHIprivacy.net).

The medical center was apparently notified on January 22 that a password-protected laptop used by UMMC clinicians was missing. The laptop has not yet been recovered.

The laptop may have contained the health and personal information, including names, addresses, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, diagnoses, medications and treatments, of adult patients seen at the medical center between 2008 and January of 2103.

"Federal and state laws require health-care institutions to notify patients potentially affected by such incidents," the notice states. "In this case, due to insufficient contact information for those who may be affected, individual notifications are not possible. "

The medical center hasn't yet heard of any unauthorized use of protection health or personal information connected to the breach, and says it's unlikely the data on the laptop has actually been accessed.

Patients with questions are advised to call (855) 241-2575, option 6, or to e-mail hipaaprivacy@umc.edu.

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