Data security incident involving fax machines

February 11, 2019 0

Pharmacy teams are reminded to double check their fax numbers following last week’s revelation that sensitive patient data had inadvertently been received by a hotel group. It appears that some GP practices and community pharmacies across the country sent faxes to two wrong fax numbers: 08444119 012 and 01564 793 558. These two numbers may appear similar to fax numbers used in the healthcare system.  Any data breach incidents will have to be reported.

Pharmacy teams are also reminded that fax communication should only be used when no other form of communication is available as it is the least secure.

Please note that the use of fax machines within the NHS (and supposedly community pharmacies) will be banned by April 2020 following an announcement by the Health Secretary, Matt Hancock, back in December. This incident highlights the dangers of using this archaic form communication to transfer sensitive patient information.

You can find further guidance about this issue on the PSNC website HERE.

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