Dorn VA warns patients of possible security breach

Published: Apr. 5, 2013 at 7:48 PM EDT|Updated: Apr. 15, 2013 at 7:48 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Officials at William Jennings Bryan Dorn VA are warning patients about a possible security breach involving patient information.

The Department of Veterans Affairs sent letters to patients this week after a laptop computer was stolen from the Dorn Respiratory Therapy department in February.  The VA Medical Center says the personal information of 7405 veterans who received testing on the device the computer was connected to were stored in the laptop.

The letter says that personal information included names, birth dates and partial Social Security numbers.

A criminal investigation is underway.  Since the laptop was stolen, Dorn officials say all laptops connected to medical devices have been protected. The stolen laptop has not been recovered.

VA officials say there is no indication the patient information has been misused. 

The VA is offering one year of free credit monitoring through Equifax Credit Watch, according to the letter. It also recommends those affected place a fraud alert on their consumer credit reports through the three credit reporting companies of Equifax, Experian or TransUnion.

"Any time a Veteran's personal information may be compromised, we take the matter very seriously," said Rebecca Wiley, the Medical Center Director. "We are reaching out to each Veteran who may have been impacted."

Veterans who have questions can call (803) 776-4000 ext. 7692 and speak with Lisa Boxton, the Dorn VA Privacy Officer.

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