Interior Health completes investigation into information breach

By Greg Fry
December 14, 2017 - 10:09am Updated: December 14, 2017 - 11:44am

KAMLOOPS — Interior Health has completed a comprehensive review of a privacy breach made public in September.

The breach involved the personal information of about 500 current and former employees. There was no evidence of further breaches.

The review, which was completed with the help of an external privacy and security expert, came to light as part of an RCMP investigation and arrests in the Lower Mainland in June and September of this year and was limited to employee information.

The health authority says the information was found in the possession of two separate individuals arrested by the RCMP on two separate occassions.

"The review, which spanned two months, was unable to determine how the breach occurred, or whether the information was accessed by an individual or individuals or external to IH," said IH in a statement. "It was, however, able to identify a likely time frame of December 2009 when unknown access to an IH employee database appears to have occurred."

The database contained the personal information of all people employed with IH between January 2003 and December 2009, including social insurance numbers, dates of birth, email and mailing addresses, phone numbers and/or former last names.

As a result, IH is urging current and former employees working with the health authority during this time to take extra precautions with their personal information, including credit card and passwords, and to avoid carrying more identification than needed such as social insurance numbers or passports.

Employees who fear their information has been breached or that they've been the victim of identity theft are asked to call both the RCMP and IH. The health authority has established a phone line for current and former employees who may have concerns. That number is 1 (877) 469-7059.

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