The medical records of about 20,000 Malaysians are among millions that can be publicly accessed online
Channel News Asia reported that Germany-based security firm Greenbone Network identified the problem in at least 52 countries, including Australia, China, Japan, the United Kingdom, France, the United States, Russia, and Brazil.
The firm published their investigation on Monday, 16 September.
The findings include various personal data such as full names, dates of birth, and dates of medical examinations, along with images of X-ray, CT, and MRI scans
For Malaysia, 19,922 patient data records were publicly accessible from three archive systems, along with 1.2 million images associated with these records.
Out of the 52 countries, United States topped the list with 13.7 million data sets and 45.8 million images compromised.
In the United Kingom, about 1,500 patient data records and 5,000 images were publicly accessible.
"The sum of these data leaks of unprotected patient data available on the Internet is one of the largest data glitches worldwide to date," said the Greenbone Network report
The report also warned that attackers may exploit the data for various purposes, such as publishing names and images to harm a person's reputation, and processing the personal data in preparation for identity theft.
It is unclear how much of the data has now been safely secured by the various hospitals and other healthcare providers affected.