The identities, email addresses and HIV statuses of nearly 800 patients were accidentally released by a sexual health clinic in London.
The Guardian, which postulates that this could be the largest leak of it’s kind, reports that the clinic "sent a newsletter on Tuesday that disclosed the names and email addresses of about 780 recipients. The newsletter is intended for people using its HIV and other sexual health services, and gives details of treatments and support.”
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The clinic has since vowed to investigate how the data leak happened.
The data breach comes ironically comes from a service called Option E intended to make receiving treatment for HIV positive patients more convenient (and presumably, discreet) by allowing patients to get test results electronically and book appoints online.
“I have been a patient at 56 Dean Street since moving to London five years ago and I have always trusted them with my information,” a victim of the leak told the Gaurdian. “OptionE is a service set up for patients who are stable and on long term HIV treatment. It is designed to make life easier so your results, etc, are sent via email…. I find it impossible to believe that in this day and age this can happen. I was able to scroll down the list and identify the names of a number of people who I knew, some of whom I was unaware of their status.”
Matt Lee is a Web producer for Metro New York. He writes about almost everything and anything. Talk to him (or yell at him) on Twitter so he doesn’t feel lonely@mattlee2669.