GPs concerned over IT security

GPs are seeking further assurances from Connecting for Health that patient records will be kept safe, following the loss of child benefit records by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

The government was left embarrassed last week after HMRC admitted losing discs containing bank details of 25 million people claiming child benefit. It has since emerged the details were only on the discs as it was too costly to edit a database.

GPC member Dr John Canning said: 'What happened at HMRC should be a wake up call to all government departments involved in major IT projects that they should be reviewing security measures.

'There are already concerns about confidentiality surrounding patient care records and this does not make me feel any more confident that details will not be misused, either maliciously or through stupidity.'

Dr Nigel Watson, chief executive of Wessex LMCs, said there needed to be 'reassurances that patients' details will be safe'.

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