Medical identity theft is one such crime that is in vogue nowadays and the organizations that help to manage and protect the data are also seen victimized. Cyber criminals take so many profits from the data that they steal, they can even sell your information to other thieves or criminals in return of money. A medical identity theft takes place in your name or health insurance numbers to get medical treatments done, buy drugs, or get any other type of medical care. If a thief’s medical information is mixed with yours, then your name and credentials are taken advantage of.
There are many medical identity theft cases to share with you that will give you an idea about the loss one can face in this type of theft. Samantha gave birth to a boy and came to know after a few months of the baby’s birth, that he was found convicted of drug abuse and addiction. Samantha was shocked after knowing the truth that her baby boy’s medical information was stolen while she was admitted to the hospital after the birth of her child. This is why she faced a lot of financial and legal hardships in her life.
Another story tells us about Dammy, who noticed that someone was using his insurance to get the prescription of a particular medical drug. He was going through a tough time because he had no insurance for his own medication.
There is no medical alert system to identity theft because it happens in the wink of an eye. The threat of medical identity theft has been increased since the scam of Anthem Inc., one of the nation’s largest health insurance companies came into news. The hackers stole around 80 million Anthem customers’ medical information. These ID thieves are often people whom we know like friends or relatives and commit this crime because they know our details and our medical information to some extent.
There are cyber criminals out there who tend to take advantage of your information and commit cyber crime or cyber security threats also. A fraudster might sell medical equipment or drugs to you so it is important for you to understand how you can detect medical identity theft.
Detecting medical identity theft
1. You should read your medical and insurance statements on a regular basis.
2. Keep a notice of your health plans that are sent to you after a treatment.
3. Always check the name of the service provider, date of service and the service provided.
4. If you find any suspicious action, contact your health plan and report the problem.
Other signs of medical identity theft include:
1. End of limit of your health plan benefits.
2. Call from a debt collector about a medical you never owed.
3. Insurance denied to you as your medical records show a condition you don’t have.
4. Medical collection notices on your credit report that you don’t recognize.
5. Any bill for medical services you did not have.
How to protect yourself from medical identity theft:
Safeguard your Social Security card and medical insurance card and treat your medical bills, prescription drug labels and insurance statements as your very sensitive information. Be vigilant and monitor all your billing statements apart from checking the accuracy of your medical records for things like blood type, medical conditions etc. by keeping a watch over your medical information, credit reports, financial statements and insurance statements may help you to prevent from all cases of medical identity theft.