The chief of a Chinese health-care payments firm underlined the procedures his company undertakes to protect patient data and said the issue should be "key" for the wider industry as technology develops.
IHD Pay provides hospitals in China with a digital payment system and aims to cut costs for the health industry and reduce queuing times. But holding patient data can be a huge responsibility, especially in an era of cyberattacks and data breaches — as seen with other sectors like at Uber and Facebook.
Eric Ho, the group CEO at IHD Pay said at the East West Tech conference in the Nansha district of Guangzhou, China: "We pay tremendous amounts of attention, put in a lot of resources to make sure that data privacy is well protected."
"One thing about our system is that although we process the facial biometric data … We would never keep those data. In terms of passing the results from the hospital and the user system, in any case, those data would be encrypted," he told CNBC's Chery Kang.
Ho explained that medical big data the company holds would be desensitized, taking away identifying traits from the figures and using it more holistically.
"We would take away the name, the identification number of the patient in question. So we only look at the general data and then we will develop different algorithms to data mine those data. But not to pinpoint any particular person or patient which I think is one of the key things we have to defend," he said.