NFL Players' Medical Records Stolen from Unencrypted Laptop in Trainer's Car

Entertainment // Healthcare and Public Health // Indiana, United States

The NFL has informed players that many of their medical evaluation records were stolen back in April. That is when a thief busted the window of a Redskins athletic trainer's locked car in downtown Indianapolis and took a backpack that held a cache of electronic and paper medical files, including NFL Combine attendees from the last 13 years. 

"That would encompass the vast majority of NFL players, and for them, it’s a worrying breach of privacy," Deadspin writes. 

NFL Players Association Executive Director DeMaurice Smith, on May 27, emailed each team's player representatives to inform them that a password-protected, but unencrypted laptop containing the records had been stolen. The knapsack also held a zip drive and certain hard copy records.  

An NFL spokesperson said in a statement that the club is taking all appropriate steps to notify any person whose information is potentially at risk. As of June 1, the league was not aware of any evidence that the criminal accessed any information on the computer, nor aware that any information has been made public.

A Skins spokesperson said no Social Security numbers, protected health information (PHI) under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or financial information, were stolen or are at risk of exposure.

The team immediately notified local law enforcement of the theft and has cooperated with its investigation. The team is working with the NFL and NFLPA to locate and notify players who may have been impacted.