AIn this series I am discussing the dangers of data breaches to the reputation of a business, specifically medical care providers and how using Alpha Thunder Tags can help protect against medical tablet theft or i-pad theft. In 2014 and 2015 we saw a number of large retailers that were hacked and customer data exposed to potential criminal activity. It seemed that not a day went by when there wasn’t another story in the news about these cyber attacks. Hospitals experienced similar data breaches in addition to reports of stolen medical laptops and computers. Consumers were concerned that their personal information would be used for identity theft purposes and their credit history would be ruined. Does all of this exposure damage a company’s reputation?  You bet it does.  In an Aug 23, 2016 article in titled, “19% of shoppers would abandon a retailer that’s been hacked”, by Matt Hamben, the author writes, “The 2016 KPMG Consumer Loss Barometer report surveyed 448 consumers in the U.S. and found that 19% would abandon a retailer entirely over a hack. Another 33% said that fears their personal information would be exposed would keep them from a breached retailer for more than three months.”


You might be thinking I am comparing apples to oranges. How does a retail store data breach compare to a hospital or medical data breach?  Consumer concerns with a retail store being hacked tend to revolve around the chance that credit card information could be stolen and used by criminals to open new accounts. When patient information is exposed, more is at stake than just credit card data. Medical history, prescriptions, addresses, billing information are all susceptable to fraudulent use. Both situations result in lowered consumer confidence. As clinics, hospitals and doctor offices are relying more on mobile technology such as tablets and i-pads, the chances of a device being stolen grows. Medical tablet theft or i-pad theft can lead to stored patient information being accessed by unauthorized users. If an Alpha Thunder Tag is attached to these devices the opportunity for theft is signifcantly reduced. A medical facility can install electronic article surveillance (EAS) antennas at entrance/exits and  if someone tries to smuggle a protected device out of that door, the antenna alarm is activated. The Alpha Thunder Tag also has a built in alarm that sounds if someone gets out the door and refuses to stop for those responding to the antenna alarm. The tags are built with tamper-proof protection to prevent a thief from removing the tag then leaving the building with the device. By protecting devices, you will protect the patient information contained in the device, or even the ability for someone to gain access to other client databases.


 Interestingly, a data breach for a healthcare provider has a greater negative impact than a breach of a retailer. In a March 25, 2015 story on titled, “Most Patients Would Avoid Healthcare Providers After a Data Breach”, the article states, “More than half of recent hospital patients are willing to switch healthcare providers if their current provider undergoes a data breach, according to a TransUnion Healthcare report on results of a new survey.”  If a greater percentage of patients are concerned with a data breach of a healthcare provider than customers are with retail breaches, then one must consider the financial impact to the facility that loses potentially half of their patients. Hospitals and medical offices must do all they can to avoid losing such a significant portion of their clients. Protecting against medical tablet theft and i-pad theft is a step in the right direction.


Don’t risk losing your patient’s data or your patients due to the theft of mobile medical devices. Use Alpha Thunder Tags and retain your customer’s confidence and their information.


Need more information on Alpha Thunder Tags? Give us a call at 1.770.426.0547 now.