Government considering giving intelligence agency access to sensitive health data

Patient journals, prescription info and emails between members of Parliament on the table

In the future, the government might very well be able to gain access to the sensitive health data of Danes, among other things.

The defence minister, Claus Hjort Frederiksen, is considering giving more power to a hacking unit (Centre for Cyber Security – CFCS) under the Danish Defence Intelligence Service that would give them access to patient and prescription info, as well as emails between members of Parliament.

Frederiksen’s move is based on a report sent to Parliament in late June by the Defence Ministry that claims the Danish law in its current form limits the CFCS’s opportunity to operate optimally.

“There is a need to ensure the CFCS continues to have the correct tools and options to contribute with a high security level in that infrastructure, which the essential functions are dependent on,” the report (here in Danish) found.

READ MORE: Denmark in crying need of an extensive cybercrime plan

Big brother over-extending?
The Defence Ministry also indicated it would analyse areas of change that would require a change to the law.

However, an IT security expert, Peter Kruse, has looked through the report and finds the expansion of power to be unsettling.

“It makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up,” Kruse told Berlingske newspaper.

“If all this becomes a reality, it’s looking like totalitarian surveillance. The centre would gain access to the private data of the public, including their health data.”