Health Information Management

Cyber attack on Anthem compromises PHI of 80 million

HIM-HIPAA Insider, February 16, 2015

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Hackers gained unauthorized access to Anthem’s information technology system and exposed the PHI of more than 80 million people who are currently or were previously covered by the insurance provider, according to The National Law Review.

Anthem set up a website that includes a letter from President and Chief Executive Officer Joseph R. Swedish and frequently asked questions about the breach. The letter states that the following current and former member information may have been compromised:
  • Names
  • Dates of birth
  • Medical identification numbers
  • Social Security numbers
  • Addresses
  • Email addresses
  • Employment information
  • Some income data
The attack also exposed the PHI of Anthem’s employees, including Swedish. Upon discovering the attack, Anthem worked to close the security vulnerability and contacted the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The insurer began working with cybersecurity firm Mandiant to perform an evaluation of its systems. Anthem will contact affected members and offer credit monitoring and identity protection, according to Swedish’s letter.
This article originally appeared on HCPro’s HIPAA Update blog. Stay up to date on all things HIPAA by signing up for e-mail updates from this blog.

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