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ACC exposes personal files

#1 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 02:26 PM

Does anyone know if any of the staff involved in the most recent privacy breaches where also involved in any previous breaches - other than a number of the 50 managers who failed to perform their duties and report it?

It would be prudent to ensure the documentation that was gathered in these cases from 2005, & others, are placed before those doing any formal investigations/ inquiries in the most recent case, that been one that whistle-blower Bronwyn Pullar has brought to the attention of the public.


ACC exposes personal files: [2 Edition]

HAYMAN, Kamala. The Press [Christchurch, New Zealand] 29 Mar 2005: A; 3.

The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) has sent out personal file information to the wrong people six times in the last three months -- including a letter about a sexual abuse claimant.

The organisation said while several hundred thousand letters containing personal information were sent out in that time, the number of errors was significantly higher than usual. It had written a warning letter to staff and introduced a computer-delivered privacy training module.

A Christchurch sexual abuse victim told The Press she was among those who fell foul of the mix-ups when personal information intended for her doctor was posted to another claimant.

She said ACC phoned her in late January to tell her it had some "bad news".

"I was told it was an accidental shuffle of papers and wasn't separated correctly. I was horrified and shocked."

The letter included her full name, address, phone number and explained that hers was "a sensitive claim" which she said many people would identify as sexual abuse.

ACC sent her "a big bunch of flowers and an apology".

However, she believed ACC only contacted her because the person who received her letter threatened to go to the media. She has since lodged a complaint with the Privacy Commission.

The woman was one of several to contact The Press after reading of the plight of an Ashburton man "gutted" to discover that 40 pages from his ACC file were sent to Darryl Muir, 50, of Christchurch, last month.

Neither can understand how files from claimants with different names, different case managers and entirely different case histories could be confused.

In another case, Christchurch claimant Lawrence McKay was phoned by a stranger who had tracked him down after receiving 50 pages of his notes, including medical records and personal income details.

"I was gutted, really gutted. Here is a government department dealing with personal information and just handing it out."

McKay phoned "to tear a strip off the ACC claims manager" and was told: "Someone mucked up, sorry. This happens a lot."

The ACC has told The Press that McKay's mix-up was due to a staff member accessing the wrong claim number, printing off the wrong documents, and subsequently releasing them to another individual.

National MP Katherine Rich
questioned how a staff member who keyed in the wrong number could have failed to check the name on the printed documents before posting them out. "The issue is one of common sense."


Rich called for stricter procedures and a near-nil failure rate.

"(ACC) has some very intimate details you may have only shared with your own doctor and sometimes not even your own family. There should be checks and double- checks; it is just so important," she said.

ACC chief executive Garry Wilson
said he took very seriously the management of the personal information and was not satisfied with recent performance.

"Following each incident, ACC has conducted an investigation into the circumstances and, where appropriate, remedial training and disciplinary action have been undertaken."

The organisation's national computer system allowed staff to access claimant information from other sites but unrelated files were never cross-referenced.

Occasionally service providers sent reports on more than one client and the release of this "shared" information caused the most issues, Wilson said.

In a letter to staff, dated February 2, Wilson wrote that several inappropriate releases of personal information had occurred in different business units and all were due to staff not taking sufficient care.

"This is simply sloppy work and reflects poorly on the individuals concerned and ultimately on ACC."


Copy files should be checked by new eyes before leaving a business unit and disciplinary action would be considered where practices and policies were not followed.

ACC received 1.6 million claims each year and its 47 operational units sent 22,000 letters and handled 20,000 phone calls each day.

--------------------

Illustration
Caption: Garry Wilson

Copyright Independent Newspapers, Ltd. Mar 29, 2005
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#2 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 02:30 PM

Does anyone know what the outcome of this was?

ACC action over files scares off engineer: [1 Edition]

HUMPHRIES, Lyn. Taranaki Daily News [New Plymouth, New Zealand] 23 May 2001: 1.

A NEW PLYMOUTH computer engineer who discovered confidential information about sexual abuse victims has gone to ground as ACC yesterday took legal action to demand its return.

Dion Phillips told TVNZ's Holmes show on Monday night of finding the two women's case notes on a second-hand computer hard drive he bought in Palmerston North.

Holmes tracked down the two women, who were both horrified that Mr Phillips had found their explicit personal information.

Mr Phillips did not return calls yesterday but an associate said Mr Phillips was running scared in the aftermath of the revelations.

ACC will lay a formal complaint against the Holmes show, saying it used the information in a report that implied security at ACC was lax.

ACC spokesman Richard Ninness
said the corporation had been maligned by the programme which he said insinuated that ACC was responsible for losing highly confidential information about the women.

TVNZ was also lambasted by the lawyer acting for the women's counsellor, Yvonne Munro, and ACC for invading the abused women's privacy for the purposes of a sensational news story.

"Rather than, if you find a wallet and return it to the person who it belongs to, they kept it," Mr Ninness said.

"Then they tracked down the two women, confronted them, and asked them `how do you feel about this?' "

Ms Munro's computer's hard drive was removed when she took her computer to be repaired in Palmerston North.

It was later sold to Mr Phillips, who came across the women's files and passed the information on to the Holmes programme.

ACC and Ms Munro's lawyer Simon Jefferson
said she had no idea her hard drive was sold after she took it to be cleared of a virus.

She had also warned the repairman it contained sensitive information.

Mr Ninness said the repairman confirmed those facts to the corporation yesterday.

It was not known whether any action will be taken against him.

TVNZ maintained the story raised important issues and it was important to find out whether the privacy slip-up was a one-off.

"We stand by the story," TVNZ spokesman Glen Sowry said in response to the ACC's intention to complain to the Broadcasting Standards Authority about the story.

Mr Ninness said ACC was writing to counsellors to warn them to ensure information about their clients was secure.

Ms Munro was not employed by or contracted to ACC but was funded by it to provide a service.

Despite that, ACC was working to get the information back.

Privacy commissioner Bruce Slane
reportedly said the case appeared to be a clear breach of privacy and he would investigate it.
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#3 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 02:44 PM

We notice the use of a nameless ACC spokeswoman in this article, a bit like the nameless Author of the report that was written by ACC to Minister Judith Collins.

Such conduct gives the perception that http://www.acc.co.nz have something they are trying to hide, yet again, - wouldn't that be another breach of the terms of their employment contract with State Services Commission?

Minister Collins
, we request you dismiss the ACC staff concerned for failing to act with transparency, integrity and compliance to various Laws imposed on them as they too are ACCountable just like ACC clients are.

'Even mail clerk' can read ACC private files

Waikato Times [Hamilton, New Zealand] 24 Mar 2012: A.9.

Confidential records on 'primitive' system open to almost anyone, Phil Kitchin reports.

The Accident Compensation Corporation's computer storage of its clients' confidential medical records is "so primitive" the records can be viewed by almost every one of its employees from a mailroom assistant up.

ACC relies on reminding its staff they should not look at files they are not supposed to view on its claims management system as one way of protecting privacy.

The lack of restrictions to medical records on the system was denounced yesterday by Dunedin ACC client Bruce Van Essen as "out of the ark". He said ACC told him there had been 2800 accesses of his files since 2006, which he said "surely cannot be related to everyday claims management".

ACC has had to pay Mr Van Essen $12,000 for one breach of privacy, and has admitted several other breaches. It is under fire for sloppy privacy practices after The Dominion Post revealed last week that ACC sent whistleblower Bronwyn Pullar 6500 clients' private details, including the names of sexual abuse or violent crime victims.

The revelation prompted an inquiry into ACC's privacy practices by the privacy commissioner and has also prompted a flood of complaints from ACC clients that their privacy had been repeatedly breached.

Ms Pullar said she had repeatedly outlined longstanding concerns to ACC about its "primitive" security for confidential medical files in its EOS computer system after learning her file was accessed nearly 2000 times in 3 1/2 years. She was horrified that 137 ACC employees "right down to a mailroom assistant" had looked at her file.

"Any one of those people could have looked at my strictly personal private medical in-confidence health information," she told ACC.

"No one can rock up to your GP's office and look at your medical records. Why should they be able to do this at ACC?" Ms Pullar said yesterday.

"ACC rely on the hope that ACC employees don't snoop and then they conduct annual audits once the snooping has already occurred.

"All claimants' medical records should be kept secure and only those with the appropriate authority and security clearance should be able to view them."

She said the confidential medical records were being regarded as general documents on the EOS system instead of being restricted.

Mr Van Essen could not understand why "low-level parties who have absolutely no medical qualifications have access to my sensitive and confidential medical records".

An ACC spokeswoman said ACC did regular checks to ensure "adherence to protocol" and all data on EOS was considered in-confidence.

She said clients in the sensitive claims unit - such as victims of sexual abuse and violent crimes - had their files stored on EOS but access to those files was restricted.

Ms Pullar and Mr Van Essen said that if that was so, all ACC clients should have restrictions on who could view their medical details.

Fairfax New Zealand Limited 2010, Waikato Times
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#4 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 02:51 PM

Wow, they give a name in this article of the ACC spokeswoman Stephanie Melville.

Is this the same Stephanie, but with a different surname, that committed an unlawful act at the Dunedin Private Investigator license hearing a couple of years ago?



Private ACC files leaked

Ali, Imran. The Northern Advocate [Whangarei, New Zealand] 17 Mar 2012: A.1

Two Northlanders whose personal information was leaked to a disgruntled ACC claimant have spoken of their outrage over the blunder.

They are among at least five Northlanders and more than 6000 ACC claimants nationwide whose private information was leaked out via a spreadsheet.

Allan Nicholas and Ivan Martinac, both of Whangarei, are still awaiting word from ACC on what precise details were released and both have not ruled out legal action.

Their claims are not related to treatment for sexual abuse.

A report released by ACC yesterday announced that it had entered into a joint review with the Office of the Privacy Commissioner and an independent auditor to fully review ACC's privacy procedures as a result of the breach.

An Auckland ACC worker accidentally attached a spreadsheet containing thousands of private records in an email to a client.

About 9000 records were sent relating to about 6000 people, including 137 who had suffered sexual abuse or assault.

A report on the circumstances of the leak was yesterday sent to ACC Minister Judith Collins.

Mr Martinac, a former Tangowahine farmer, said it was the second time ACC had released information that included details such as his name, claim number, date of accident, how the injury happened and cost of the claim.

He said included in the leaked information was the fact that ACC had spent $14,000 fighting Mr Martinac's claims for review on three separate occasions.

"They seem to have neglected their code of conduct and turned themselves into a profit-making organisation. I am sick of their behaviour," he said.

In a letter to him on June 1, 2010, ACC general manager claims management Denise Cosgrove apologised for the breach of privacy and said action had been taken to ensure the error was not repeated.

But the latest breach, he said, had strung him out and to make matters worse, ACC did not explain what specific information was leaked.

Another claimant, Allan Nicholas, said his heart sank and he became incredibly nervous when told about the breach.

The mental health support worker said the way an ACC employee broke the news to him on Wednesday was unacceptable.

Mr Nicholas said he was forced to hand over his personal details over the phone before ACC would tell him about the latest breach.

"This is just the beating you take from ACC who feel they can do whatever they like and whenever they like. I still don't know what information about me has been released," he said.

Mr Nicholas said he was shocked and devastated upon learning of the latest blunder by ACC and then outraged at the way news was broken out to him.

ACC spokeswoman Stephanie Melville said if people were in any way anxious or upset and felt their concerns were not being taken seriously, they should ring ACC on 0800 101 996 or 0800 650222 to make a complaint.

ACC advocate Jeanette Brock
said given that private information on some claimants had been repeatedly leaked meant ACC had a serious problem withholding sensitive information.

Privacy Commissioner Marie Shroff
has formally launched an investigation into the blunder which would cover ACC's standards for securing information.

Copyright 2012 Independent News and Media. All Rights Reserved.
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#5 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 03:14 PM

Who had these files whilst they were allegedly not in ACC's offices?

This occurred after us ACC, http://www.acc.co.nz , levy payers funded how many computer systems that were supposed to secure our private medical documentation securely?

Who is not fulfilling their legal obligations and contracts at our expense?


ACC battler's files return
TWENTYMAN Maryanne. Waikato Times [Hamilton, New Zealand] 02 June 2010: 3.

A Hamilton amputee is accusing ACC of "fraud and perjury" after his medical records resurfaced last week, despite the corporation insisting for years they had been destroyed.

Warren Smith is now seeking legal advice and hopes to sue ACC for $1.2 million after he recovered 12 years worth of documents through an Official Information request.

"Someone has to be held accountable for this - it is corruption at its worst," he said.

Mr Smith, who was an engine reconditioner, said it had been 20 years since he tripped at work and grazed his foot - an injury which eventually led to his amputation.

He said it had since cost him more than $100,000 in his battle with the state insurer.

"And all that time ACC claimed that my records between 1990 and 2002 had been destroyed," he said.

ACC claims management general manager Denise Cosgrove said today it was true that Mr Smith's ACC claims had not always run smoothly.

"However, we absolutely reject any suggestion of deliberate withholding of information or misleading the courts.
Mr Smith has lodged 13 claims with us over the years and 11 of those have been accepted. Our total support for him is now nearly $350,000," Ms Cosgrove said.

After his accident, Mr Smith was told by medical specialists that his foot had ulcerated. For 12 years he had treatment and eventually specialists told ACC Mr Smith would require urgent microflap surgery.

Mr Smith said after months of wrangling ACC approved the $8920 operation.

"The surgeons went in but found the damage was far worse than expected - the tendons were dead and there was little they could do."

His leg was amputated in 2001, after which he requested his medical records to find out why his situation "got so out of hand".

But a letter from ACC dated April 16 2002 stated Mr Smith's medical files had been destroyed.


Since 2002 Mr Smith has engaged in 11 legal reviews, hearings and court cases fighting for compensation and answers over what he claims was bad treatment by both ACC and medical practitioners.

Unable to afford legal representation Mr Smith fought the cases himself and he said he won most decisions.

"But they were decisions lightly based on so much loss of evidence - with ACC claiming they had destroyed the crucial documents which, if they had been available, would have hugely helped my case," he said.


Eventually Mr Smith requested whatever notes ACC had under the Official Information Act.

"I actioned that last month and got a call to pick up my records from the local ACC branch.

"It was all there, dating back to the 1990s. But ACC told judges they had been destroyed," he said.

While Ms Cosgrove said ACC "regretted" any concern caused for Mr Smith and his family, she believed ACC had acted on the majority of claims he had made.

"On top of this Mr Smith has, on at least two occasions, also sought payments 'outside of the legislation' from ACC for the trouble he feels he has been caused, including one request for more than $1 million, which we have rejected," she said.

Mr Smith is now waiting for legal advice from a Wellington firm specialising in ACC cases.

--------------------

Credit: TWENTYMAN Maryanne

Illustration
Caption: Battling on: Amputee Warren Smith could not believe that ACC had withheld his medical records. Picture: MARK TAYLOR
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#6 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 03:17 PM

ACC launches new Pathway: [2 Edition]
Manawatu Standard [Palmerston North, New Zealand] 02 Dec 1997: 7.

A NEW computer system aimed at reducing the "mountain" of paper files has just been launched by ACC.


The system, known as Pathway, will lead to better rehabilitation, faster decisions and improved consistency for ACC claimants, the corporation says.

It replaces a collection of 1970s computer technology which has been unable to cope with the demands put on the corporation in its 23-year history, and has become increasingly expensive to maintain.

Stage one of the project will cost $18 million, with the total cost of installing the system budgeted to cost $25 million. The replacement of other legacy systems will add another $20 million to the budget over three years.

ACC general manager of business technology Henry Carr says the system has been custom-built to take into account ACC's unique role in the field of injury insurance and injury management.

"There is no other organisation like ACC anywhere in the world, meaning we have virtually had to start from scratch with this project.

"It is no small achievement that we have developed this new system within the relatively small budget of $45 million and are now delivering it on time throughout the ACC network."

The system has been developed in Microsoft Visual C++ and uses standard Microsoft presentation features such as function taps, drop down boxes and scroll bars.

It runs on Pentium processors using Microsoft's latest NT Workstation operating system. The database has been implemented using Sybase SQL Server running on a Sun E6000 server.

Mr Carr said front-line staff who have used the system are highly satisfied with it.

"This will certainly be reflected in a better service for customers in terms of the management of their claims and their rehabilitation. It will also allow us to keep better statistics, reduce errors and enable us to more easily detect fraud."

So far, the Pathway system has been introduced to ACC offices in New Plymouth, Gisborne, Whakatane and Hamilton, and will be introduced in Auckland shortly. Eventually there will be 1250 computer terminals set up throughout the country.

Copyright Independent Newspapers, Ltd. Dec 2, 1997
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#7 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 03:27 PM

ACC bill will be $50-$150m: [2 Edition]
PULLAR-STRECKER, Tom. Dominion Post [Wellington, New Zealand] 09 Aug 2004: C; 6.

A COMPREHENSIVE revamp of ACC's IT systems is set to cost somewhere between $50 million and $150 million.

The technology overhaul, already under way, will reach a watershed next month when ACC's board decides whether to proceed with the purchase of a case management system from Irish software firm Fineos.

With commercial negotiations still in train, general manager of development Murray Young will say only that the project is costing "tens of millions".

It is a "big project" which goes to the heart of ACC's operations, he says.

The trial of the Fineos software is due to wrap up this month but Mr Young says price negotiations have begun so that ACC's board can be presented with likely costings before the September meeting.

The software is set to replace ACC's Pathway claims management system, which went live in 1997 and cost $45 million.

It will give healthcare providers up-to-date information about the status of claims and electronic access to advice about the treatments ACC would expect to fund in different circumstances.

The business case for the technology refresh was presented to ACC's board in February and ACC has already got out its cheque book.

In June, it took delivery of two powerful E25K servers manufactured by Sun Microsystems, bought to replace Sun E10000 servers purchased in 2000.

It has also commissioned Wellington IT services company Solnet Solutions to improve the software system that pays healthcare providers for work covered by ACC.

The enhancements to the medical fees system are designed to ensure all providers can file claims electronically and to alert ACC staff of any requirement to look at a patient's rehabilitation plan once a prescribed number of medical interventions is exceeded.

A third component in the software overhaul has seen ACC begin work replacing its Canadian Geac Smartstream financial software with applications supplied by Oracle.

"The main tenet was by investing in these systems we can improve outcomes by ensuring the right person does the right task at the right time," says Mr Young.

Minimising administrative hold ups as claimants proceed through the system and are referred to different healthcare providers can save ACC money and help the healing process, he says.

Mr Young says if the installation of Fineos gets the green light, he would expect "significant inroads" to be made installing the software during the next calendar year.

ACC's existing IT outsourcing partner, US multinational Unisys, is set to perform the integration work.

ACC expects to revive a plan to create Internet portals that health providers and claimants could use to get direct access over the Web to claims information.

However, work on the portals is unlikely to kick off till 2006 at the earliest, with ACC concentrating first on replacing the core functionality of Pathway.

Former chief information officer Henry Carr first touted the concept of a "health provider portal" in 2001, along with plans for a portal that self-employed people could use to view their ACC insurance policies and claims histories.

Mr Young says it was decided that ACC's IT systems "didn't have the robustness" to support the initiative, ahead of the current revamp.

ACC is likely to trial a secure e-mail service next year which healthcare providers will be able to use to communicate confidentially with the state-owned enterprise.

It is talking to the State Services Commission's E-Government Unit and to Inland Revenue about the project. Inland Revenue last year pioneered a secure e-mail service that lets taxpayers send and get answers to queries about their individual tax affairs via e- mail.

Mr Young says ACC is also installing document management systems Stellent to do away with the need for the agency to keep paper- based files containing correspondence relating to patient claims.

All documentation will instead be scanned into Stellent so that it can be called up on screen and instantly accessed by call centre staff through a link to the Fineos case management system.

Copyright Independent Newspapers, Ltd. Aug 9, 2004
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#8 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 03:36 PM

ACC delays switch to Fineos: [2 Edition]
PULLAR-STRECKER, Tom. Dominion Post [Wellington, New Zealand] 04 Sep 2006: C; 8.

State-owned insurer won't fully embrace paperless vision till late 2007.

---------------------

ACC will spend an extra $5 million carrying out additional testing on its Fineos case management system, dipping into a $20 million contingency fund and pushing the implementation of the system back to early next year.

The extra tests will check the way the case management system performs under heavy use when integrated with ACC's other software systems and will take the total cost of replacing its Pathway claims management system to $131 million.

ACC earmarked $126 million for the massive technology overhaul but it budgeted an extra $20 million on top of that to meet any unexpected costs.

The state-owned enterprise had planned to begin piloting the system in Wellington in August, but has pushed that back till November.

It now plans to deploy Fineos nationwide in three stages during the first quarter of next year.

ACC has already spent 10 man-years testing the Irish software application that lies at the heart of its technology revamp and its interfaces to other systems, such as ACC's medical fees, document management and financial systems.

General manager of business transformation Kevin Walker says ACC decided to carry out the additional tests as an extra precaution.

This was after it experienced glitches implementing a separate medical claims system earlier this year that resulted in payments to healthcare providers being delayed for up to three weeks.

"One of the issues was that the combination of the Pathway system and an imaging system doing things together under load caused problems," he says.

"Testing individual applications doesn't always pick up everything" and ACC decided on the extra tests "given the significance of (Fineos) and the potential impact on ACC if it's not working right".

Testing to date has shown no reason why Fineos' software and interfaces shouldn't be up to the job, he says.

"We have functionally tested the Fineos product to a stage where we are very happy with its performance. It is going to deliver what the business requires."

At first, staff will continue to work with paper forms and correspondence once the system goes live next year.

However, paper documents will be scanned into electronic case files at the point at which they would normally be filed, so staff will then be able to view them on screen.

Later next year, ACC is likely to more fully embrace a "paperless" vision by scanning all incoming correspondence into electronic case files as soon as it is received by the organisation, Mr Walker says.

He says the two-step process is designed to reduce risk and ensure staff have time to get used to using electronic files and to adapt to new working practices.

ACC has mooted giving the public online access to Fineos, so people could look up information on the status of their claims and their accounts.

Copyright Independent Newspapers, Ltd. Sep 4, 2006
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#9 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 03:48 PM

We wonder how this woman is coping now.
Was she one of the claimants that had her privacy breached yet again?

The latest breach of ACC clients privacy should be sending alarm bells and those concerned in this 1997 case, ifthey are still managers at ACC,
most definitely should be instantly dismissed for failing to perform a service as they would have known about this previous case and the impact
it had on their client.

It is to be remembered and strongly emphasized, http://www.acc.co.nz clients don't know whom is employed either directly at ACC or on contract to ACC,
whom have access to private documentation, that may have questionable backgrounds or motives.


Sex abuse details in ACC file transfer upset woman: [3 Edition]
Sharon. Evening Post [Wellington, New Zealand] 01 Mar 1997: 7.

A Hutt Valley woman says the Accident Compensation Corporation has breached her privacy by sending her file with details of sexual abuse to an ACC branch office she has worked in.

The woman, who until a couple of months ago was receiving counselling from ACC for sexual abuse suffered as a child and did not wish to be named, says former colleagues, friends and a family member who now works at ACC's Lower Hutt office would now know details of the abuse.

It was unethical, she said. "People I know have read my file. They will know who it was (the abuser), when it happened, how it was done and how many times.

Everybody had access to my file. "People I know and still see in the streets - I know they know everything about me now and it makes me feel I have been raped all over again."

ACC corporate relations manager Alan Seay confirmed the woman's file was sent to Lower Hutt but said it had been two years since she worked there.

One of the woman's entitlements was for vocational rehabilitation and it was normal for a file to be sent to a branch office for that to be dealt with, he said. However, that did not happen a lot in sexual abuse cases.

"The sensitive claims unit handles these cases with the utmost care. Only the people who need to see them (files) see them. We are sorry for any distress caused," Mr Seay said.

The woman plans to complain to the Privacy Commissioner and is considering legal action against ACC.

Her file was initially held in Wellington but last September was transferred to Lower Hutt so she could receive vocational rehabilitation. The woman said ACC promised a file that did not contain details of the sexual abuse would be sent.

"I got told a dummy file would be made up and that was the only reason I agreed. Otherwise I would never have agreed."

The woman then asked for her file to be transferred to Upper Hutt because she did not want Lower Hutt staff to know the outcome of a psychiatric assessment she was undergoing. She found out through her Upper Hutt case officer the whole file had been sent to Lower Hutt. She said that the Wellington ACC officer who sent the file had admitted it was a mistake and apologised. "That is not good enough. My privacy has been violated."

Copyright Independent Newspapers, Ltd. Mar 1, 1997
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#10 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 03:54 PM

Please refer also to post #1

Stranger receives man's ACC details: [2 Edition]
HAYMAN, Kamala. The Press [Christchurch, New Zealand] 19 Feb 2005: A; 7.

An Ashburton man is dismayed after discovering details from his Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) file were posted to a complete stranger.

The man, who does not want to be named, said he was stunned to receive a text message from Darryl Muir, of Christchurch, explaining he had information from the Ashburton man's ACC file. "I'm very gutted," he said. "For me to actually even speak to anyone from ACC involves a very rigorous process of giving my date of birth, address, cellphone ... yet someone in Christchurch can text me and say `I'm in possession of your file'. I'm not very happy at all."

He had contacted the Privacy Commissioner and was seeking legal advice over potential compensation.

It began when Muir, a former butcher and musician, asked for a copy of his file to help his challenge against an ACC decision to stop his payments.

Muir, 50, was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome about 20 years ago and had since been unable to work or play music.

When his file arrived in the post, Muir was astonished to also discover about 40 pages included from the file of a man with a different name, from a different town, and with an entirely different case history.

The ACC told The Press in a statement: "Regretfully computer claim records for another claimant were mistakenly placed on a copy file which was being prepared to be sent to Mr Muir. This information was then sent to Mr Muir together with his own claim information."

No information about Muir was sent to any other person, it said. A copy of the information released in error was being sent to the Ashburton claimant together with a letter of apology.

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#11 User is offline   unicorn57 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 05:03 PM

View Posthukildaspida, on 26 March 2012 - 02:51 PM, said:

Wow, they give a name in this article of the ACC spokeswoman Stephanie Melville.

Is this the same Stephanie, but with a different surname, that committed an unlawful act at the Dunedin Private Investigator license hearing a couple of years ago?



Private ACC files leaked

Ali, Imran. The Northern Advocate [Whangarei, New Zealand] 17 Mar 2012: A.1

Two Northlanders whose personal information was leaked to a disgruntled ACC claimant have spoken of their outrage over the blunder.

They are among at least five Northlanders and more than 6000 ACC claimants nationwide whose private information was leaked out via a spreadsheet.

Allan Nicholas and Ivan Martinac, both of Whangarei, are still awaiting word from ACC on what precise details were released and both have not ruled out legal action.

Their claims are not related to treatment for sexual abuse.

A report released by ACC yesterday announced that it had entered into a joint review with the Office of the Privacy Commissioner and an independent auditor to fully review ACC's privacy procedures as a result of the breach.

An Auckland ACC worker accidentally attached a spreadsheet containing thousands of private records in an email to a client.

About 9000 records were sent relating to about 6000 people, including 137 who had suffered sexual abuse or assault.

A report on the circumstances of the leak was yesterday sent to ACC Minister Judith Collins.

Mr Martinac, a former Tangowahine farmer, said it was the second time ACC had released information that included details such as his name, claim number, date of accident, how the injury happened and cost of the claim.

He said included in the leaked information was the fact that ACC had spent $14,000 fighting Mr Martinac's claims for review on three separate occasions.

"They seem to have neglected their code of conduct and turned themselves into a profit-making organisation. I am sick of their behaviour," he said.

In a letter to him on June 1, 2010, ACC general manager claims management Denise Cosgrove apologised for the breach of privacy and said action had been taken to ensure the error was not repeated.

But the latest breach, he said, had strung him out and to make matters worse, ACC did not explain what specific information was leaked.

Another claimant, Allan Nicholas, said his heart sank and he became incredibly nervous when told about the breach.

The mental health support worker said the way an ACC employee broke the news to him on Wednesday was unacceptable.

Mr Nicholas said he was forced to hand over his personal details over the phone before ACC would tell him about the latest breach.

"This is just the beating you take from ACC who feel they can do whatever they like and whenever they like. I still don't know what information about me has been released," he said.

Mr Nicholas said he was shocked and devastated upon learning of the latest blunder by ACC and then outraged at the way news was broken out to him.

ACC spokeswoman Stephanie Melville said if people were in any way anxious or upset and felt their concerns were not being taken seriously, they should ring ACC on 0800 101 996 or 0800 650222 to make a complaint.

ACC advocate Jeanette Brock
said given that private information on some claimants had been repeatedly leaked meant ACC had a serious problem withholding sensitive information.

Privacy Commissioner Marie Shroff
has formally launched an investigation into the blunder which would cover ACC's standards for securing information.

Copyright 2012 Independent News and Media. All Rights Reserved.

Its not a good idea to ring ACC at all. Written communication ONLY - otherwise you dont have any record of your communications. Why havent they put the email address. [email protected] will get you there!
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#12 User is offline   TopGun 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 08:14 PM

I am an other that has had a complete strangers confidential information sent to me via Mail. My formal complaint was addressed to Paul Harvie, demanding a complete audit of the local branch office procedures. I didn't even get a reply from him. ACC demanded the documents be returned and I got a one line apology from a branch supervisor.It is registered in my correspondence to them, that I have NO trust in ACC what so ever.Since I have had a IT sweep done and I am still seeking legal advice, one matters within the sweep. Horrific is all I can say.
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#13 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 08:33 PM

Post #12 Do you mean this Paul Harvie?

http://www.nzherald....jectid=10604450
The issue also met with condemnation from the Employers and Manufacturers' Federation, which issued a statement opposing a repeat of the 1999 exercise, saying employers were wary. Its health and safety manager Paul Harvie said 1999 had turned into a bun fight between insurers offering artificially low premiums to try to shore up their market share.

We note he has very skant information on his linkedin profile.

http://nz.linkedin.c...rvie/24/730/b63

Paul Harvie

Manager RIS Midlands/East Coast at ACC


New Zealand
Insurance

Paul Harvie's Overview

Current

Manager RIS Midlands/East Coast at ACC

Connections

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Paul Harvie's Experience
Manager RIS Midlands/East Coast
ACC


Government Agency; 1001-5000 employees; Insurance industry

Currently holds this position
Contact Paul for:

career opportunities
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getting back in touch
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#14 User is offline   TopGun 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 09:48 PM

" getting back in touch" YOU HAVE TO BE JOKING !!

Actually I got a phone call from ACC complaints within 4hr of them receiving my complaint.
Their comment>> it is being handled by senior local staff. HA HA !!

Its all BULL for ACC to take weeks to action anything.
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#15 User is offline   not their victim 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 10:08 PM

he WONT have a meeting with me...to address privacy, fraud etc.....

so as far as im concerned....gutless wonders....who know what they have done....
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#16 User is offline   not their victim 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 10:10 PM

Government Agency; 1001-5000 employees; Insurance industry

holy crap.....5000 employees...?

so that means my personal info hasnt gone to the 2800 on acc website...but 5000!
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#17 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 10:40 PM

NTV that it between 1001-5000, from memory linkedin don't have separate categories for between those amounts...

Relax and take deep breathes mate

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#18 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 11:56 PM

http://www.whl.co.nz...bid=320&mid=777

ACC file sent to wrong person


Published: 6:13PM Tuesday July 01, 2008 Source: ONE News


A government department has come under fire for sending a client's file, which includes details of sex abuse and drug use, to the wrong person.

The botch-up by the Accident Compensation Corporation has raised serious concerns about the handling of confidential information.

A former accident rehabilitation and compensation client exercised her right to have access to her personal flies from ACC's sensitive claims unit. However she was shocked to find they not only provided her with her files but included confidential documents outlining the clinical history of another client.

"I noted there were a number of pages that related to another sensitive unit claimant with a severe history," Angela told ONE News.


Angela has had an ongoing battle with ACC and says this is not the first time she has received sensitive information relating to someone else.

"In the past, on requesting my file, I also noted other files belonging to another person of which I've advised them of and subsequently destroyed."

But she says this breach, detailing a woman's history of sexual abuse and drug use, was so bad she had to contact ONE News.

"I believe this is a matter of public concern," Angela says.

A privacy lawyer says ACC failed by sending Angela the information, even if it was a genuine mistake.

"There is a general obligation when handling personal information at all times to ensure they are protected with safeguard," says John Edwards, privacy lawyer.

ONE News approached ACC who said they take the privacy of clients very seriously but admitted that "as in any human organisation a slip up is possible".

Chief operating officer Gerard McGreevy
said he didn't know anything about the circumstances in this particular case.

ACC says it receives close to two million claims a year and sends out thousands of pieces of correspondence every day and it insists it does protect the privacy of its clients.

"The Privacy Commission last year found on four instances against ACC for breach of privacy and if you contextualise that with the number of claims that we dealt with, and the correspondence that we issued, while none of them are justifiable it's not a bad record," McGreevy says.

But Privacy Commissioner Marie Shroff is not convinced and says she is concerned such incidents happen "time and time again".
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#19 User is offline   hukildaspida 

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 02:53 PM

We trust that Stacey Parenti at least attempted to find the person whose private information she was sent so they are aware that their privacy has been breached.

That way they too can take whatever action they so choose to if they wish to pursue it further.

What Department & branch of
http://www.acc.co.nz did this latest incident arise from?

http://www.nzherald....jectid=10800540

ACC again in breach of privacy
By Joanne Carroll
5:55 AM Sunday Apr 22, 2012



ACC inadvertently sent a woman another person's claim review on the very same day the Privacy Commissioner announced an inquiry into ACC privacy breaches.

Stacey Parenti, a Canterbury student, said she sent her claim to the resolution service for review after ACC refused it.

She received her claim back by post, but also in the envelope was another woman's claim.

She did not read the other woman's information but rang ACC and was told to send the information back or destroy it.

"I am so concerned about my information being leaked to other people," Parenti said. "They really need to tighten up their procedures. This other woman would have no idea that her information is being sent out to random people."

This latest breach happened on March 23, the day the Office of the Privacy Commissioner and ACC jointly commissioned an inquiry after claimant Bronwyn Pullar received 6000 claims by email.

ACC's Stephanie Melville refused to comment during the inquiry.
By Joanne Carroll | Email Joanne

ACC Minister Judith Collins. Photo / APN Collins 'not satisfied' with ACC
ACC adviser's shaky past
ACC adds 'deranged' insult to injury

Related Tags

Accident Compensation Corporation
Privacy

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#20 User is offline   unit1of2 

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 07:52 PM

What I don't understand is this... How come they say, we are searching your records using all other generics of your name, as there is obviously claimants with names similar when we pull up your details... and wind up pulling theirs also. So we have two people sifting through your file/s making sure there is no documents that aren't related to you.
HOWCOME... Our files just arn't our files..that our information is just placed under our own Name, date of birth AND CLAIM NUMBER.../s... End of. ACC seem to have our records, documents and or files all over the place it seems? No wonder it's an inefficient system. In FACT IN REALITY it is NEVER THE SYSTEM it is how it is USED! THAT IS THE PROBLEM.
ANY IT operator worth their salt knows, that it's not the system, it's how it's used. The operators are never trained in the system properly, and systems are never used to the full and expected extent.To go further and spend/waste MILLIONS of dollars on another so called custom made system is ludicrous. What are they expecting to get, something that is basically exactly the same, only in 'kiddies operating mode', so it's hopeful that SEMI TRAINED OR FULLY TRAINED OPERATORS CAN SUPPOSEDLY USE THE DAM THING. However once again, it'l not be fool proof, nor will it be fully used to it's potential. Bad habits will still be practiced because they are taught by idiots practicing themselves, bad habits on these systems...and so 'Nothing changes'.....
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