Computer stolen from VA hospital in Columbia held records of 7,400 veterans

Computer stolen from VA hospital in Columbia held records of 7,400 veterans (Image 1)

From: Veterans Administration Press Release

The William Jennings Bryan Dorn VA Medical Center is notifying 7405 Veterans that their personal information may have been compromised when a laptop was reported missing from the Respiratory Therapy department.  As a precaution, the facility is offering one year of free credit monitoring to those affected Veterans.

“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.”

On February 11, 2013 a laptop that was used in pulmonary function testing was reported missing from a locked testing lab.  The laptop contained personally identifiable information on its hard drive — name, last four digits of the Social Security number, age (in some cases birthdates), weight, race, and test results – on all patients receiving pulmonary function tests on that specific machine from 2006 to present.

The Dorn VA Medical Center Police and Office of Inspector General are treating the event as a criminal investigation which is on-going.  There is no indication the information has been misused and the laptop has not yet been recovered.

The medical center is sending letters to each identified Veteran who received testing on that specific pulmonary function testing machine, notifying them and offering free credit monitoring services.

Veterans who have questions or concerns about whether their personal information may have been involved can call the Dorn VA Privacy Officer, Lisa Boxton, at (803) 776-4000 extension 7692.

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