The advent of “in the cloud” medical records services, such as Microsoft HealthVault and Google Health, promises an explosion in the storage of personal health-care information online.
But these services pose sticky privacy questions — unless you know how to protect your personal medical records.
A promise of safer personal health data
Your private health information is migrating wholesale onto the public network with the advent of online health-care records stored in massive data centers around the world.
While the services aim to make it easier for consumers to access and manage their personal health information, the ready availability of this data also makes it much easier and less expensive for insurers to put your medical history under the microscope…
…Take, for example, prescription records.
“All 51,000 pharmacies in the U.S. are wired for data mining. Selling prescription records is a multibillion-dollar-a-year industry,” states an FAQ published by Patient Privacy Rights, a major consumer-health and privacy-rights organization.
This data mining of prescription records can cost consumers big-time…