Patients Vastly Unaware of Insurers’ Access to Online Health Data

Jessica Davis

Just one in 10 American patients believe health insurance companies have access to their personal spending and streaming habits, although reports have shown insurers routinely search private and public sources for consumer-generated health data, according to a recent MITRE-Harris Poll survey.

Reports from ProPublica and Politico have highlighted the common practice used to help insurers build customer profiles and predict potential healthcare costs of consumers. Insurance companies will review lifestyle or behavior data pulled from purchasing, membership, or online activity, according to the recent MITRE report.

In response, researchers from MITRE and the Harris Poll conducted an online survey of 2,065 US adults in June, to assess potential privacy issues and...

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