California breach is highlighting contact tracing data vulnerabilities

Health and Wellness Informatics News

Atascadero State hospital came up with the report this week that a state employee has improper access to more than 2000 records which is including information necessary to track COVID-19.

A California-based hospital came up with important reports on Thursday. A state employee has improper access to more than 2000 employee and patient records over the course of about 10 months. According to the Departments of State Hospitals, the breach is including names, COVID test results, and health information.

It is necessary for the tracking of COVID-19 for near about 1415 patients along with the former patients. Also, according to the California breach, it includes 617 employees from Atascadero State Hospital.

The number of exposed records is relatively very small than some of the highly publicized breaches. Experts are also saying that this incident is highlighting the importance of securing tracing data for the contact.

DHS came up with the reports that the breach got identified on February 15 being part of a standard review. As the employees are using the access, they are continuing to perform their normal duties of the job.

The safeguards in the place have not yet managed to catch the unauthorized actions from the earlier, according to the department. It is due to the similarity in the job duties of the employees. 

It is a very common practice for system administrators to copy files on behalf of DSH business units. Hence it is making it very challenging to detect automatically any of the files that they might copy and access inappropriately.

Currently, DSH is saying that it has no evidence that the information is not having its proper use. It also does not know why the employee went to perform this action. Concerns regarding cybersecurity and COVID-19 are looming from the very start of this pandemic. Along with its thirst for the occupying information, it is making people more vulnerable to the bad actors.

The vaccine distribution pipeline is presenting its own risks with its potential targets in its multiple steps of the process. The security is also being visible lacking in apps that are aiming at the addressing of the pandemic. Hence it is raising concerns about the intersection which is working between privacy and mass surveillance.

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