UK Liberty

Why assurances about security don’t matter

Posted in database state by ukliberty on June 4, 2008

Why it’s what happens in practice that does:

The sharing of passwords on a hospital x-ray system at a hospital in Devon has made it difficult to identify which doctor wrongly verified the treatment of a patient who died after a blunder.

The case sheds light on the collison between culture of the NHS – where the sharing of passwords is said to be common practice – and the high security needed when NHS staff and doctors access large databases of confidential patient information under the £12.7bn National Programme for IT [NPfIT].

Password-sharing in the NHS – which has been highlighted in case studies published in Computer Weekly – is said to be endemic partly because space for computer screens in wards is limited, as is time for clinicians to log in and out. …


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