From: Alice Taylor
Personal Data of COVID-19 Patients Being Leaked and Distributed on WhatsApp, Daily

Lists of the personal information of COVID-19 patients are being circulated on WhatsApp, constituting a serious breach of the privacy of those named.

A Microsoft Word document, seen by Exit was created on the computer of a doctor employed by the Regional Health Service of Durres.

Through extracting information from the file, Exit was able to confirm the individual’s identity. It is not known if this individual was the one to leak the information- something that is occurring on a daily basis.

The information being circulated in the public includes name, age, address, occupation, whether they are hospitalised or not. 

In Kruje, an image is being circulated including sensitive information. This information includes the name, COVID-19 status, and address.

The data is updated each day and a new list makes its way onto WhatsApp to be circulated freely.

This information is not only protected under medical and doctor/patient confidentiality but it is protected under the countries data protection laws. This violation which is occurring on a daily basis is a gross infringement on the rights of the patients.

In addition to this, the data leaves cause for concern that information on those with COVID-19 is contradictory. In the Kruje list, details of negative individuals are also being circulated with positive cases. This results in a situation where public trust in these figures and information held by state authorities is questioned.

It is not known whether these lists are accurate, or the motive for leaking them to the public.