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Data Breach At University Hospital Limerick

University Hospital Limerick (UHL), (the medical facility serving North Tipperary), will be sending written communications to some 630 patients within the Midwest region, following a data breach which concerns adults, parents/guardians and children. Same was subsequently published online in the form of a file linked from a Twitter account, last May, 2020.

Gardaí were informed of the alleged breach by a non-HSE employee; with the hospital, itself, becoming aware of the breach on May 29th last.

We understand the data, which included patients’ names, dates of birth, together with medicines dispensed, were removed from a computer system and relates to patients who attended at the hospital’s emergency department between April 18th and April 22nd last.

The data in question is understood to have been extracted from an automated system used in the hospital’s emergency department, without the consent of the Health Service Executive (HSE) and not by any one employee of the HSE.

Unconfirmed reports state that the data may have been accessed by an employee of a company; latter employed to support the data system concerned.

Twitter moved quickly to block the link to the data, while also disabling the account.

Gardaí and the Data Protection Commission were immediately notified and the HSE obtained a High Court Order, on June 5th last, to restrain the individual involved, from communicating further obtained confidential information.

The company then supporting the system at the time, is no longer managing the data concerned.

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