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Protect Yourself Against Medical Identity Theft

Thought this could be informative and helpful - with our medical records to be online, saw that Gerri Willis is running a series this week on ways to keep ones medical identity safe.

"Protect Yourself Against Medical Identity Theft"

snippet from her article:

I’m a big fan of keeping my personal information personal. But when it comes to your medical information, maintaining privacy is difficult, if not impossible. That’s because your information isn’t just held by your doctor, hospital and insurer, it’s also a commodity bought and sold by marketers, data base companies and even retailers.
In fact, on the black market, your medical records are more valuable than your social security number. According to Dr. Deborah Peel of Patient Privacy Rights, it costs just 50 cents to a dollar to buy a social security number, but $14 to $24 to buy someone’s private medical details. Smart identify thieves are leaving the dumpster diving behind and focusing on medical identity theft because they prefer the deeper pockets of insurers to consumers.
A typical identity theft involves the looting of your insurance information by a thief who then makes false claims for drugs or medical services.....
Read more: http://www.foxbusiness.com/on-air/w...-against-medical-identity-theft#ixzz2U32zORud


Every doctor asks for a social security number but they have no business asking for it and you are not obliged to provide it. I have never filled out my social on a medical form. Most of the time I'm not asked, sometimes they say we need the social and I decline and its fine and only once were they difficult.
On a slightly unrelated tangent, it was found that some grocers (any retailer probably) offering loyalty/discount cards sell individual specific purchasing habits to insurance companies (or marketers or corporations/gov.s). Such food-o-graphic profiles, if you will, could also be used to determine risk actuaries, and whatnot, based on everything sold in a grocer/retail store (condoms/alcohol/junk food/red meat/etc.).

This is probably the reason many stores force everyone buying alcohol--even those 40+ yrs old--to scan their driver licences, so as to match their identity with their loyalty card history; so even if you use cash, this can be tied back to you, specifically.