Possible Data Breach at Walter Reed

Unauthorized sharing of a data file may have disclosed personal identifier information on approximately 1,000 military patients, Walter Reed Army Medical Center announced June 2. The hospital’s public affairs office said an investigation continues into the breach, with preliminary findings having identified a computer from which the data were apparently compromised. The Associated Press reported June 3 that the data include names, social security numbers, birth dates and other information. But the hospital said they did not include “protected health information,” such as medical records, diagnosis or prognosis for patients. Still, medical center officials are working to notify each individual named in the file and are offering credit monitoring assistance and advice on protection against identity theft. The AP said the persons impacted include patients from Walter Reed and additional military hospitals. The issue came to the attention of Walter Reed officials May 21, when an outside company alerted them of the possible exposure.