Pakistan: Patient data held by Balochistan health authorities leaks to social media
An Excel file containing complete data pertaining to patients tested for coronavirus in the cities Quetta and Taftan in the the Balochistan region of Pakistan has been circulating in WhatsApp groups about Balochistan. The file contains information such as names, phone numbers, age address and other identifying information for the patients. The leaked data puts the patients at risk of personal harm and social stigma, even after recovery. Balochistan government officials say the data leaked because a variety of committees and government COVID-19 cells such as those in the Directorate General of Health, the Chief Minister Secretariat, Services, and General Administration Department, among others, need to receive the data regularly. A health department official objects that these departments really only need the number of patients and their locations.
Writer: Adnan Aamir
Publication: Balochistan Voices