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Republican Launches Obamacare Data-Privacy Plan Republican Launches Obamacare Data-Privacy Plan

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Health Care

Republican Launches Obamacare Data-Privacy Plan

(Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images)

photo of Laura Ryan
December 16, 2013

Republican Rep. Diane Black of Tennessee is pushing legislation to require the government to notify individuals if their personal information is swiped off the Affordable Care Act's insurance exchanges.

The legislation, introduced Friday, is aimed at highlighting potential security issues with the online insurance enrollment sites. Republicans, as part of a broader campaign to highlight what they consider the law's flaws, maintain that the exchanges are putting personal data at risk.

"Whether through navigators with no background checks, or inadequate security-testing on their website, the Obama administration has thrown Americans' data security out the window when it comes to Obamacare," Black saidin a statement. "IT experts have repeatedly raised red flags about the security of the information people are putting into the exchanges, and it is only fair that the administration gives people proper notice if this information has been compromised."

 

But the severity of the data-theft threats remains a matter of contention.

Democrats maintain that the Republicans' attacks are unfounded. Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., released part of a classified Health and Human Services Department briefing Friday that reported only 32 security incidents since Oct. 1, none of which involved a successful theft of any information.

Republicans are concerned about data breaches because of the sensitive personal information, such as Social Security numbers, needed to enroll on the website.

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