What Exactly Is Medical Identity Theft?

Identity theft is typically believed to be about stealing money but there are other forms too.

One of  those alternatives is medical identity theft in which the thief attempts to receive free medical treatment at someone else’s expense.

medical-identity-theft

MEDICAL IDENTITY THEFT

All too often the identity thief is a member of the victim’s family, though other likely suspects can include medical care workers who steal information and then sell it on to a third party.

Whoever the thief is, the victim will always get hurt because hospitals cannot deny anyone treatment in an emergency room.

Medical identity theft is on the rise and doctors and health care institutions are not ready to deal with the severity and frequency of this type of crime.

Although medical identity theft is all about procuring treatment, there is a financial aspect to the crime because bills either go unpaid, or because innocent people are billed for medical treatment that they didn’t receive.

PREVENTING MEDICAL IDENTITY THEFT

Probably the best tip for avoiding medical identity theft is to keep your medical information safe and secure.

Never let third parties gain access to your medical information and only give your details to responsible people at whatever medical establishment you’re dealing with.

Fortunately, many people are more careful with financial information than they used to be because of the risks of identity theft but they’re not nearly as careful with their medical information.

They really should be though.

Medical identity theft is on the rise and it can be just as damaging as the more common financial variants of the crime.

About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.

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