Lawsuit Accuses Hospital of Sharing Private Healthcare Data With Facebook

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. An emerging Seattle-based class-action lawsuit condemns a major hospital for allegedly sharing sensitive patient information with Facebook and associated third parties. The claim puts into question the ethical dimensions of little-known data-monitoring tools that could have devastating impacts. The litigant, Jacq Nienaber, has accused Overlake Hospital Medical Center of effectively allowing Meta Pixel, and its Conversions Application Programming Interface, to act as a kind of surveillance within its infrastructure. These marketing tools, commonly embedded in websites to optimize advertisement delivery, have resulted in a significant breach of trust, as intimate health secrets belonging to hundreds of thousands of patients have potentially been siphoned off and shared. We obtained a copy of the lawsuit for you here. Ironically, the revelations came to light around the same time the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) highlighted the severe privacy risks around such prevalent web and mobile app tracking technologies in a joint advisory letter to 130 hospitals and health app developers. The warning stated that ill-guarded tracking tools such as Meta or Facebook pixel and Google Analytics could lead to unwanted implications, including identity theft and discrimination against unsuspecting consumers. Nienaber’s lawsuit amplifies the cautionary approach of the agencies. It contends that Overlake Hospital not only used the surveillance widgets to increase profitability by encouraging patients to interact more with its digital health platform, but also allowed Facebook’s parent company,…Lawsuit Accuses Hospital of Sharing Private Healthcare Data With Facebook