Florida Optometrist Data Breach Highlights Concern for Small Business

Florida Optometrist Data Breach Highlights Concern for Small Business

Companies big and small can be impacted by data breaches in general and a recent case in Florida highlights just how much damage such an incident can cause in a very short period of time, and why it might be vital for small businesses to take on tech insurance that help protect them from the costs of fallout.

In mid-May, an optometrist’s office called Sight and Sun Eyeworks Gulf Breeze discovered that it had exposed a significant number of patients in a data breach, according to a report from operated by Gulf Breeze Family Eyecare, Inc., which operates the business. The information exposed in the incident includes patients’ names, addresses, Social Security numbers and medical records.

The data was accessed by a person or company without authorization to do so, though interestingly this was apparently done as a means of offering additional medical services to patients, rather than to commit identity theft or some other type of fraud, the report said. While it was not revealed how the entities that may have accessed the information were able to gain access to it, the company noted that it has strict data protection policies and that it would do all it could to uphold these in the future.

“Sight and Sun Eyeworks Gulf Breeze is pursuing every legal option to recover the misappropriated records and prevent the individuals who accessed those records from further using them for any purpose,” the company said.

However, it also cautioned those affected by the incident to keep a close eye on their financial accounts to make sure that they have not been accessed without their knowledge, the report said. Further, it advised victims of the breach to contact the company by mail or phone with any questions or concerns they might have about the incident or its fallout.

This case once again serves to highlight just how possible a data breach can be, even with comprehensive security protocols in place. These may be helpful in preventing a breach overall, or at least detecting one soon after it happens. But nonetheless, these incidents may carry significant price tags associated with remediating the damage done as a result. Consequently, small business insurance policies including those for tech insurance may be a great way for companies to avoid financial difficulties that may stem from having to cover those costs.