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New Yorker indicted in $1.4M identity-theft scam

A Queens, N.Y., man has been indicted for his role in an identity-theft scheme that defrauded several financial institutions out of more than $1.5 million, New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer said Thursday.

Prosecutors have alleged that Fayyaz Ahmed, 39, fraudulently obtained about $1.4 million from financial institutions through home-equity loans and lines of credit using the personal identification information of two Staten Island residents. The institutions included units of Washington Mutual Inc., Wachovia Corp. and Wells Fargo & Co.

Privacy compliance has declined

Three years after federal rules governing the privacy of patients' medical records went into effect, compliance seems to have declined, according to an annual survey conducted by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).

The association surveyed 1,117 hospitals and health systems, asking officials at the facilities about compliance with Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) rules. Although 91 percent said in 2005 that they were mostly compliant, that number dropped to 85 percent this year.

University of Texas Computer Breach Exposes 200,000 Records

Nearly 200,000 records of alumni, faculty, staff, and current and prospective students of the business school at the University of Texas at Austin have been exposed in a data breach, school officials said Sunday. It was the second at the university in three years.

The breach was discovered Friday, and involved 197,000 records, some of which included Social Security numbers and "possibly other biographical data," UT said in a statement issued Sunday.

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