Australian Red Cross reports data breach affecting 550k blood donors

Australian Red Cross Blood Service announced a breach of personal information related to recent blood donors, according to the Guardian.

The breach, which affected about 550,000 blood donors, occurred when an unauthorized person accessed a donor information file. This file — which included names, addresses and other personal details — was left unsecured by a third-third party contractor that maintains the Australian Red Cross Blood Service website.

"The issue occurred due to human error," Shelly Park, chief executive of Australian Red Cross Blood Service, said at a press conference, according to the Guardian. "Consequently, this file was accessed by a person outside of our organization."

Ms. Park said that the file has been shut down and that forensic experts are assisting Australian Red Cross Blood Service with the investigation. She also emphasized that the file did not contain records related to medical history or test results.

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