Lawmakers take steps to beef up data security

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Following two security breaches in the past year, Utah lawmakers want to alert participants in the state Medicaid program or Children's Health Insurance Program that their personal information will be stored in state databases.

Sen. Stuart Reid, R-Ogden sponsored the legislation, which requires health care providers to make the disclosure when issuing a notice of their privacy practice.

The bill also requires the state to consult data security experts and incorporate the best security standards.

In January, a Health Department contractor lost a device containing personal information for about 6,000 Medicaid recipients. Last year, the Health Department announced hackers broke into a server containing personal data, including Social Security numbers, for about 780,000 people.

A House committee unanimously approved the bill Wednesday. It advances to the full House for consideration.

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