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ALERT: Stealing your EHR is more lucrative than stealing a credit card

Just the other day, I was saying this. Our personal health records are very sensitive, and very private and we must take steps to protect them. We teach these precautions to our clients, and many have been able to avert disaster. With MediBid, your data is safe, and you are ensured the utmost in privacy. If you are paying cash for medical care, unless you need a prescription for a controlled substance, there is no need for the doctor to have your SSN or a copy of your drivers’ license!

Experts: Stealing your EHR is more lucrative than stealing a credit card – The Advisory Board Daily Briefing.

Experts: Stolen patient data is most lucrative form of identity theft

EHRs more expensive black market buy than Social Security numbers

December 12, 2011

On the black market, a Social Security number will cost identity thieves about $3 and credit card information will cost $1.50. A set of electronic health records (EHRs), however, rings in at about $50.

According to a panel of cybersecurity experts at the recent Digital Health Conference in New York, medical identity theft has become one of the most lucrative forms of identity theft.

The stolen EHRs, health insurance information, and other personal health data can be used to make false or inflated insurance claims, get prescription drugs, or obtain medical treatment at the account holder’s expense. Unlike a credit card number, patients’ health information cannot be canceled or altered to prevent criminals from using the data, notes John DeLuca of IT company EMC.

Some fraudsters obtain personal health data through “phishing” scams in which they pretend to be a representative of a physician practice or insurance company. Data breaches at health care facilities also can lead to medical identity theft.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, medical identity theft can cause patients to receive bills for illegal claims, have a lower credit score because of unpaid medical bills, be denied coverage because of claims filed by a fraudster, and lose health insurance coverage (Petrochko, MedPage Today, 12/7).

One response

Every time I’ve gone into a doctor’s office in Tennessee, the person at the front desk asks for my SSIN, Drivers’ License, date of birth, and address. I never give this information. I keep a different set of fake data for each doctor. Why? Why the hell not? Why would anyone give this kind of personal and highly sensitive information to a total stranger????

Then, they all force you to sign a HIPAA authorization. That’s when the nightmare starts. This form is passed from doctor to hospital to lab to pharmacy, etc, etc because it gives them the right to do so.

I’ve had it happen. A doctor who never had my insurance information because he doesn’t bill insurance, did some pathology and used a lab that had done some work for another doctor I’d been to. The lab took it upon themselves to submit the data to my insurer. When I called to ask why, they said I’d authorized them through the doctor to do so. They didn’t say which doctor, I figured it out.

The HIPAA form uses the clause, “in case of emergency” to coerse you into signing it. I told them they’d violated my Civil Rights under HIPAA and that the best thing they could do is loose my name and write off the $80 tab. They had no clue what I was talking about and it took me about 6 months to get the point across.

So, why is it so bad in Tennessee? Because of TennCare. It has created an entire underground mentality betweeen doctors and patients and politicians. If you’re a junkie, it’s junkie heaven. If you’re a doc who takes TennCare, you’re just the right person for the junkie to see. No matter what the intent was for TennCare, it’s as bad as Romneycare, and Obamacare.

OH, and that stranger sitting behind the front desk at the doctors’ office isn’t usually smart enough to understand why anyone wouldn’t want to fork over such sensitive information. After all, they got their “medical degree” at some two year college that they paid for with a student loan that they never intend to pay back and that you and I will have to pay for. They have been empowered by the student loan program and their two year degree to demand this information and guard the doctors’ precious time and ego from the likes of you if you don’t want to give it up.

Tennessee just can’t figure out how it got to be #1 in meth lab production.

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