With technology evolving more every day, businesses are becoming increasingly reliant on digital mediums. As such, comprehensive disaster recovery planning needs to account for the possibility of a data breach. It's crucial for all employees to be aware of necessary security protocols and to fully understand the ramifications that could follow if a company inadvertently releases sensitive information.
For organizations in the medical field, it's especially important to keep patient records safe. Medical identity theft can be extremely devastating to individuals and HIPAA violations can be costly for healthcare organizations.
The Los Angeles Fire Department is currently working to recover after experiencing a data breach. As reported by the LA Times, confidential personal information was illegally obtained from patients who rode city ambulances. Specifically, 26 patients received letters from the department, saying that their data might have been compromised.
However, Chief Deputy Daren Palacios said at a news conference that the breach affected 100 government agencies and is being investigated by both the Internal Revenue Service and the Tampa Police Department.
Lisa MacKenzie, a spokeswoman for Advanced Data Processing and its subsidiary, Intermedix, told the Times that one of the billing company's employees is at fault. The individual illegally accessed information, according to Mackenzie, and was involved with a "very large" identity theft ring in Florida.
"It's a huge crime and it was not just targeting Intermedix," MacKenzie told the news source. "It was targeting other organizations and individuals as well."
The accessed information included names, dates of birth and Social Security numbers. Some of the data was used to fill out fraudulent tax returns as part of a larger scheme to get illegal refunds.
While no company can predict when or how a security breach will occur, business resumption will happen faster when all employees are properly prepared. Working with a disaster recovery consulting firm can ensure a comprehensive risk assessment is completed, which will thoroughly train all team members.