Security and Privacy
Patrick Jean Lemur
January 7, 2013
Penelope Pattalitan EdD, MSN, FNP-BC, RN-BC
Identity theft is becoming very easy due to technological advancements. Protecting patient information must include all efforts from medical facilities, employees, and consumers. Society has the right to be protected from any misuse of personal data. An effective protective program starts with front-end preventive safeguards and ends with follow-through that reaches wherever incorrect information has flowed Identity theft has become a very popular topic for the past decade or so, the number of complaints has increased and is costing more than anyone wants to be spending on that issue. The Federal Trade commission estimates that as many as nine million Americans have their identity stolen each year, resulting in over 50 billion dollars of financial loss (Mercuri, 2006). Very common on Television to hear news and commercials warning about identity theft or some company trying to sell their services, helping in the fight to prevent it. In this paper, there will be discussions on the disadvantages of the break in privacy dealing with identity theft and on possible action plan to prevent the incident. What are your Reactions?
Identity theft is a fraud that occurs when one identity is taken away and used in order to gain services or something usually of financial nature. Criminal identity theft occurs when a victim’s name, address, and mostly social security number is used by a different individual other than the actual owner. Oftentimes, the imposter would obtain that information from someone with access to a data bank where personal information is stored; it may be a hospital, social security department, company that collects data for the purpose of providing financial services. The information may be sold and used to open accounts, gain access to services fraudulently, which the actual owner, a victim of the theft will be charged for. Though many have tried to find ways to prevent and fight that kind of invasion of privacy, it remains an issue and a very expensive one. Identity theft is the fastest growing crime in United States; it affects 13 persons per minute, 799 per hour, or 19,178 per day (Mercuri, 2006). When it comes to personal identity theft, elaborate steps must be taken to repair identity, all creditors and banks must be contacted in order to freeze accounts and limit the damages. Any financial activities that were not approved should be reversed and investigated and any opened accounts closed. New identification cards should be provided, depending on the extent of the situation legal counseling may be necessary. Whichever way it happens, identity theft remains a burden for all not only individuals, but also for companies who carry the burden of screening employees in order to protect their customers from such occurrence. No one would welcome such calamity, not only the loss of privacy, the financial burden, but more so the trauma of not being able to prevent it completely. What are the Disadvantages of the Break in Privacy?
The disadvantages of the break in privacy are for the hospital as well as the victims. Big corporations are kept accountable for all data collected from their clients and are liable for any misuse of that information no matter the use. Personal information are trusted to be used for an individual benefits in the process securing a service; it should not be sold or used without consent for others benefits. Once information has been compromised, it is the duty of the corporation which allows the break to occur to remedy the problem. Remediation can be very costly, the company is liable for the break, cause - analysis is necessary to find the leak and establish preventive measures. Which involves retraining personnel and maybe adding more doing the hiring, better screening process; make every one accountable for work involvement. It is a costly process but...
References: American Health Management Association, [AHIMA]. “Online, On Message, On Duty: Privacy Experts Share Their Challenges.” April 2008. Available online in the FORE Library: HIM Body of Knowledge at www.ahima.org.
American Health Management Association, [AHIMA] e-HIM Work Group on Regional Health Information Organizations (RHIOs). “Using the SSN as a Patient Identifier.” Journal of AHIMA 77, no. 3 (Mar. 2006): 56A–D. Retrieved from www.ahima.org
Mercuri, R. T. (2006, June). Security Watch: Scoping identity theft. Communications of the ACM, Retrieved from: www.citeseerx.ist.psu.edu
O’Brien, Jenny. “Responding to Identity Theft: One Organization’s Effort to Turn a Negative Event into a Positive Result.” Journal of AHIMA 79, no. 4 (Apr. 2008): 40–41. Retrieved from www.ahima.org
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