Ca: Security breach of kids' info raises alarm

Jennifer O’Brien reports:

A memory stick containing records of 4,500 kids has gone missing from a speech and hearing clinic at UWO, a thumb-sized example of how ever-smaller digital technology is heightening security risks.

Included among the records on the tiny storage device are 11 years worth of names, addresses, phone numbers, birthdates, doctor information, school and child-care information.

Also on the stick are 142 OHIP numbers.

The privacy breach should “never, ever, ever” have happened, said Ontario’s information and privacy commissioner.


The records are from the tyketalk and infant hearing programs, administered by the Middlesex London Health Unit at the H.A. Leeper Speech and Hearing Clinic at the University of Western Ontario’s Elborn College.

The missing records are from 1999 to 2010.

Staff at the clinic realized the USB key was missing early in February after space was “rearranged,” said Janice Deakin, UWO’s provost and vice-president academic.

But while staff have known for more than two months, letters to the parents of the 4,500 kids only went out Monday.

Read more in the London Free Press.

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