Another Personal Data Spill

The state of Massachusetts inadvertently sent out disks containing contact information for professional licensees -- people who have to apply for and obtain a state license to work in their chosen profession, like certified public accountants and health care administrators.

The names, addresses and, in some cases, Social Security numbers of more than 450,000 licensed professionals on 28 separate disks were recently distributed to various locations. Nearly all of the missing disks have been recovered with no information compromised. The one missing disk, which contains information on nursing home administrators, was reportedly sent to an agency in California and is still in transit.

The state blamed the gaffe on new software it's using to distribute the information. Apparently, the software was supposed to delete the Social Security numbers.

Seems this type of story is becoming disturbingly regular. How does your organization protect personal data? What safeguards do you take for your own personal data? Confide in me at llow@redmondmag.com.

Posted by Lafe Low on October 10, 2007 at 11:57 AM


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