Potential Medical Identity Theft Alert Products
In searching for medical identity theft products, we were able to find a variety of companies that offer medical identity theft protection services. However, none of the companies we found fit the criteria of being non-identity protection companies, nor did they offer this solution as a feature, as well as notifying customers/patients of a possible breach. We found that many of the companies found focused mainly on preventing the problem of identity theft, rather than solving it. We discuss the many methods we took to find this information, and also discuss what we found below.
Our search began by doing a broad search of medical identity theft services. One thing we noticed during this search was that there were many articles about how to protect families from medical identity theft. Even though these how-to articles didn't answer our question, we still opened them up hoping that there would be mention of one or two products that families can use to alert them when potential fraud happens. When we didn't see this, we did some more focused searches for services that can identify medical identity theft and also do alerts. This search brought up products like PatientSecure from Imprivata and RightPatient from KernellO Health, and PreShield by Healthcare Fraudshield. PreShield was very close to what we wanted, however, the alerts it sends are to workers, and they're mostly about steps to take when there's potential fraud. We also found some other interesting products and services that we couldn't put into the spreadsheet but met some or most of the requirements. These products had plenty to offer but they didn't offer alerts. At best, they offered alerts through their APIs. Because these searches weren't successful, we changed our strategy.
Next, we looked at the example given to us, InAssist, and realized that the company partners with LifeLock, which is a leading identity theft protection service. Because we realized InAssist's HealthLock service didn't offer alerts itself and used LifeLock, we proceeded to look for services that partner with LifeLock. We saw a few results about partnerships with Equifax and other insurance companies, but not many companies that fit the bill. We found a partner testimonial page, but only found four results, with only one case coming close to fitting the bill. However, it was about an unnamed financial institution and it wasn't about medical identity theft. We looked further and found an old article about a partnership with a company named Med Flash. However, the domain in that article and the domain when we searched for the company both didn't work. This strategy failed, so we switched again.
We found the founding members of the medical identity fraud alliance, an alliance of organizations in charge of ensuring medical identification information doesn't fall into the wrong hands. We looked at the companies and organizations mentioned, but the closest was Life Med ID, Inc., which was primarily an identity protection company. We realized that this wouldn't work, so we changed strategies again.
On our first step, our searches brought up three companies of interest. With this information, we looked for competitors to those companies using Owler, Craft and other websites. We looked at forums and reviews to see if there were any mentions of other companies like them, as well as the company InAssist. There were many companies, but only a few were close to what we were looking for. Some of them were primarily ID protection companies, and others didn't provide any services that came close to what we were looking for. We had to change strategies again.
Our next strategy was to look at news websites, blogs, reviews, forums, and other websites that write about current events, using InAssist and the companies we had found before in the search. We did this in hopes of finding mentions of other companies like these companies. This search only produced one relevant result with a news article detailing a hack-a-thon where an employee from InAssist took part. It was a hack-a-thon surrounding health, so we looked through the winners and participants, but didn't find any company or app that did what InAssist does.
Our next strategy was to look at NAICS codes in hopes of finding similar companies to InAssist. We found that identity theft companies have a code of 812990, however, so did many other fields like astrology. When searching for companies that offer identity protection services with this code, the companies we found were mainly ID protection companies and no other kind of companies that offer this service. When we realized this wasn't going anywhere, we repeated all steps again, trying different search strings and tactics. After this we ended our search and placed some interesting information from our search below. Our search came up with many companies that were ID protection companies first, and companies that offered some form of medical ID protection. What we failed to find were those that met those criteria and sent alerts or notifications. We think many of these companies provide their services with APIs so that healthcare systems can set up notifications and alerts themselves.
- InAssist partners with LifeLock, an identity protection company, to provide its customers with medical identity service.
- In 2015, 47% of people in the US had their personal health data compromised.
- In three healthcare systems alone, over 1.5 million medical records were breached in 2017. Health providers are under the most pressure to keep patient data under wraps.
- In terms of medical ID theft, the last report in 2014 showed there were 2.3 million victims for that year alone.
- The average cost of a single medical identity theft is $13,540 and is calculated to cost the industry over $30 billion a year.
- Imprivata PatientSecure is one of the leading biometric identification solutions that improve patient matching and decreases medical identity theft.
- PreShield by Healthcare FraudShield provides overall fraud protection to healthcare systems and institutions, where it investigates claims in real-time and makes clear alerts that detail how a worker should proceed if fraud is found.