Copyright of the image
Singapore has released a photo of US citizen Mikhy Farrera-Brochez, who they say is behind the leak
Confidential data concerning more than 14,000 HIV-positive people, including foreign visitors, were stolen in Singapore and disclosed online.
Authorities revealed details about the 2016 health data breach Monday.
They believe that an HIV-positive American whose partner was a Singaporean chief physician is at the origin of the leak.
The piracy comes just months after the theft of 1.5 million Singaporeans' archives, including Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, last year.
Confidential information, including names, addresses, HIV status and other medical information, would have been included in the last offense.
According to officials, the details of 5,400 Singaporeans and 8,800 foreigners dating from January 2013 have been compromised.
Until 2015, foreigners living with HIV were not allowed to visit the city even as tourists.
Now, anyone wishing to stay beyond 90 days, including to work, is subject to a mandatory medical checkup to make sure that she is not infected with HIV.
Who was behind the breach?
Authorities estimate that a 33-year-old US citizen who was living in Singapore in 2008 is behind the leak.
Mikhy Farrera-Brochez was found guilty and imprisoned for fraud and drug-related offenses in 2016 and was deported last year.
He is the former partner of Ler Teck Siang, former head of Singapore's National Public Health Unit, who was found guilty of helping Farrera-Brochez to falsify his medical record in order to conceal its HIV status.
Officials said Ler had offered his own blood, tagged Farrera-Broche, to allow him to enter the country.
In a statement, the Ministry of Health accused Ler of committing the violation, accusing him of failing to comply with the rules on the handling of confidential data.
They said they learned for the first time in 2016 that the American had been able to hold confidential information, but thought all the material had been seized and secured by the police.
Copyright of the image
Singapore police seek international aid in the case
They claim to have been informed on January 22 of this year that Farrera-Brochez could still be in possession of the HIV registry data.
"I am sorry that one of our former employees authorized to access confidential information from our HIV registry does not appear to have complied with our safety guidelines," said Health Minister Gan Kim Yong at 39, a press conference held Monday in Singapore, today online. news website reports.
On Monday, health officials said they had tried to contact "practically all" permanent residents and Singaporeans on the list – but that they had only managed to talk about it. 39, about 900 people.
A hotline has been set up for those affected and advice will be offered, confirmed the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health, Chan Heng Kee.
He also said that officials believe that Farrera-Broche was abroad, but do not know where.
"He may continue to publicly disseminate information," Chan said.