Mount Sinai School of Medicine announced today that a hard drive which may contain confidential patient information has been found to be missing from a personal computer in the offices of the World Trade Center Medical Monitoring and Treatment Program. An investigation has been launched, and there is no reason at this time to believe that any data on the missing hard drive have been accessed or used improperly.
Information about as many as 1,500 patients may be contained on the missing hard drive, including identifying information and, in some cases, protected health information. The hard drive was password protected, but a person with sophisticated computer abilities might be able to bypass the password protection.
To ensure there is no recurrence, all computers in the Program have been physically secured and the hard drives have been encrypted. Mount Sinai has also reported this matter to potentially affected patients and to the appropriate state and/or federal agencies as required by applicable law. These patients have been advised to check their credit reports and to take appropriate precautions against possible identity theft.