Dentist informs patients whose medical and insurance information was on stolen computer

Philip P. Corneliuson, DDS, of Fresno, California sent his patients the following notice on October 8:

SUBJECT: IMPORTANT – Notification of Data Security Breach

Dear Patient,

On the afternoon of Saturday , September 15th 2012, we discovered our office suite broken into and our computer stolen. The computer stored both medical records and insurance information, including social security numbers of several patients, including yours. As a result, your personal information is now potentially accessible to unauthorized individuals.

Immediately upon discovery, we contacted local authorities and reported the break-in. You may contact the Fresno Police Department and reference case number 12-67356 if you have any questions.

We encourage you take the following steps to protect yourself from risks associated with this breach of your data:

?Medical Records and Health Insurance Information: Regularly review the explanation of benefits statement that you receive from your insurance administrator. If you see any services listed that you did not receive, contact your administrator immediately at the number on your statement. You should also check your credit reports for medical bills that you do not recognize. If you find anything suspicious, call the credit reporting agency on the number on the report.

?Social Security Number: Place a fraud alert on your credit files. A fraud alert requires potential creditors to use what the law refers to as “reasonable policies and procedures” to verify your identity before issuing credit in your name. The alert will remain on your accounts for 90 days. You can request a fraud alert through any one of the three credit reporting agencies: Experian (888)397-3742; Equifax (800)525-6285: TransUnion (800)680-7289. You can also request copies of your credit report from any of these agencies, which you should check for suspicious activity. If you find anything, contact local authorities and file a report of identity theft. Ask for a copy of the police report, as you may need to supply this to your creditors.

?Financial Account Numbers: No bank or credit card information was compromised. This information is not stored on our computer.

If there is anything that Dr. Corneliuson can do to assist you, please contact us at 559-261-0185 or via email at [redacted by phiprivacy.net].

Sincerely,

Update: This breach was reported to HHS as affecting 980 patients.

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