PHILLY HOSPITAL DATA BREACH UPDATE – ALLEGED ID THEFT CAUGHT
On December 8, 2009, we informed you that patients’ personal identifying information was taken from several of the University of Pennsylvania Health Systems’ computers. Since that time, the police have apprehended an Upper Darby man, Shane McNish, and have charged him with sordid crimes, including data theft, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer. The alleged ID thief was apprehended by security a Sears store after the alleged ID thief made fraudulent purchases for almost $3,000. The police found personal identifying information of at least 19 patients in the alleged ID thief’s car.
While most courts currently do not recognize the fear of identity theft as a recognizable harm, victims of this data breach will hopefully be able to prove damages and may seek civil action against the ID theft, and possibly against the University of Pennsylvania Health System. Either way, other victims of the ID theft will remain at risk so long as their Social Security numbers and date of birth remains the same.