A computer containing patient and research information was stolen from a physician’s home on April 30, 2012, says the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The physician notified the local police department.
MD Anderson says it has taken steps to help prevent this from happening in the future, including accelerating efforts to encrypt all MD Anderson computers. This technology scrambles each computer’s data to make it more difficult for unauthorized users to retrieve any information. MD Anderson is also reinforcing its privacy policies with all employees about how to handle patient information.
MD Anderson worked with forensics experts to recreate the information that was on the stolen computer, and notified patients. MD Anderson has no reason to believe that the computer was stolen for the information it contained, since other items were also stolen from the employee’s home.