315,000 patient files have disappeared from Emory Healthcare, an Atlanta-based healthcare company. The files contained 17 years worth of private data on all patients who had a surgical procedure done at Emory University Hospital, Emory University Hospital Midtown, and The Emory Clinic Ambulatory Surgery Center between 1990 and 2007. Besides protected health information, the discs also contained around 228,000 patients’ Social Security numbers.
According to John T. Fox, CEO of Emory Healthcare, the files were not obtained through hacking. An employee discovered that the backup files were missing from an office cabinet where they were no longer in use. Whether they were stolen or misplaced is yet to be known, but there is no evidence that the files have been misused.
Fox apologised on behalf of Emory Healthcare and said the company will be sending letters to affected individuals whilst also offering free identity protection services. It is estimated that the breach will cost Emory Healthcare as much as $2m.
See the full story in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Aviva has had to apologise after it’s HR department unintentionally sent 1,300 employees in its asset management arm an exit email that was intended for just one person. The Telegraph reports that the email instructed the workers to hand over all company property, security passes, and electronic passwords on their way out of the building whilst reminding them of their contractual obligation to retain confidential information.
Aviva’s HR department quickly sent an apologetic email to the stunned employees and has since publicly apologised for the mishap.
See the full story on Telegraph.co.uk
As the usage of Macs is on the incline, so are the number of viruses out to infect them. A recent report conducted by Russian antivirus company Dr. Web has found that over half a million Macs are infected with the Flashback trojan, which poses as a Flash Player installer and disables Apple’s automatic updating mechanism for its system-wide malware application. This means that once your computer is infected, you’ll never be informed and you’ll be open to future attacks.
Whilst most of the infected computers are in North America, it’s fair to say that this type of bug will go worldwide and quickly. Mac users often don’t think they’re at risk, but as cyber attacks become more common daily, it’s very likely that hackers and virus creators have millions of Mac users in their sights.
See the full story on arstechnica.com