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Div. of Public Health announces COVID test data breach

Delaware Public Media

Delaware’s Division of Public Health announced a data breach Sunday.

The breach involved approximately 10,000 people’s information, but officials say there is no indication any of that information has been misused.

DPH says the breach occurred when a temporary staffer accidentally sent unencrypted emails containing COVID-19 test results to an unauthorized user.  

An Aug. 13 email included test results for people tested between July 16 and Aug. 10, while another on Aug. 20 had results for people tested on Aug. 15.

The emails included the test dates and locations, patient names, patient date of birth, phone numbers if provided and test result. No financial information was included.

The emails were meant for use by call center staff who help people get their test results. The person who received the emails alerted DPH and reported deleting them.

The state reported the breach to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and to the Delaware Department of Justice, as required by law.

DPH is mailing letters to individuals affected by the breach and is opening call center for anyone with questions about it.  The call cneter number is 1-833-791-1663.

Tom Byrne has been a fixture covering news in Delaware for three decades. He joined Delaware Public Media in 2010 as our first news director and has guided the news team ever since. When he's not covering the news, he can be found reading history or pursuing his love of all things athletic.