April Newsletter

April 02 , 2012 in Newsletter

 

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SecurShred E-Newsletter - April 2012
 

SecurShred Providing Electronic Data Destruction Solutions

 

Residents and businesses are learning that electronics recycling may not be in compliance 

 

Pile of Computer Electronics

Today's computers are faster, more efficient, come with bigger storage and processing capacities and are being produced at virtually the same price now as they were 18 months ago. This advancement in new technology has created a problem in terms of what to do with our old technology. In order to keep up, companies need to continually upgrade their software and electronics. This creates a tremendous amount of e-cycling waste and increases the risk of confidential material being leaked and the potential of identity theft.

In 2009, 5 million tons of electronics were in storage and 2.37 million tons of electronics were ready for end-of-life management. Out of that, only 25% was collected for recycling. (www.epa.gov, October 2011) Many people are misinformed or not properly educated on what to do with their old technology once it has become obsolete and is ready for the scrap pile.

The risk lies with the handling, access, storage, and disposal of the hard drives housed within every computer and removable electronic storage devices...

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County Trashes Confidential Information


Violating privacy law, health department discards personal information of people applying for benefits in public trash bin


Michele Nelson, reporter, Payson Roundup, Arizona - March 9, 2012

Dumpster Diving

Gila County Health Department staff dumped confidential personal information that included copies of drivers' licenses and birth certificates into a public recycling bin found by two Payson residents on Feb. 29.

"The fact this is happening is inexcusable," said Supervisor Tommie Martin. 
The health department reported in a press release this week that an employee threw two bankers-style boxes containing 12 files of internal documentation into a recycle container used by other businesses in Payson.  

The employee has been reprimanded and retrained, said county officials. County officials have not confirmed how many individual's records were compromised, but the files reportedly included hundreds of pages.  

County officials said they've launched an investigation but have not yet revealed how the confidential information ended up in boxes of recycling material an employee routinely dumped in the trash. County officials have denied reports that confidential records were discarded at least twice...

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Industry Holds Its Breath Awaiting HITECH Final Rule


Pros and cons of in-house and outsourced data destruction


Pile of Computer Electronics

Last December, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) publicly committed to releasing the long awaited Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) final rule this month. Despite that commitment, there are now confirmed reports that the HIPAA/HITECH rule will not be published until the summer.

On March 24 the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) received the rule from HHS. OMB has up to 90 days in which to review the rule (although it often receives an extension on that deadline). This rule will include four parts: the primary changes to the HIPAA Privacy and Security rules, stemming from the July 2010 proposed rule; the final breach notification rule; changes to the enforcement rule dealing with process and penalty levels; and certain changes from the Genetic Information Nondisclosure Act. This "mega rule" will not address the controversial proposed changes to the HIPAA accounting rule, which are on a different timetable.

Accordingly, while this process is moving through its final stages, the rule likely will not be released until mid-summer at the earliest, presuming the OMB does not push for additional changes. It is expected that companies will have seven months from the publication of the rule to be compliant with its provisions. The substance of the rule will not change, so companies can begin preparing for this requirement now.

"The final rule is a 10 on the data protection Richter scale," said NAID CEO Bob Johnson. "It will mark the date that fines for improper disposal of medical information become mandatory in most circumstances. It will also mark the moment that small medical practices are forced to take secure destruction of information more seriously as publicity on the issue goes through the roof."

 

 

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In This Issue:
SecurShred Providing Electronic Data Destruction Solutions
County Trashes Confidential Information
Industry Holds Its Breath Awaiting HITECH Final Rule
 
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