Saturday, February 7, 2015

Anthem hack: 'Healthcare is a target'

Healthcare industry, listen up: you're a prime target for cyberattacks. If you don't think so, just ask Anthem – or virtually every IT security expert out there. They're all saying the same thing. 

Indeed, Anthem has notified 80 million of its members and employees that their Social Security numbers, dates of birth and personal data were swiped in one of the nation's biggest cyberattacks yet. An outlier, you say? Don't' forget the nearly 42 million people who have had their health data compromised in HIPAA breaches. Or perhaps the whopping 130 million affected by the Heartland Payment Systems breach in 2008. Then there's the Target breach, Community Health Systems Heartbleed attack, Sony – you see the trend.


DOI Launches Investigation Into Anthem's Response to Breach
On Thursday, California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones (D) launched an investigation into Anthem's response to the breach. Jones directed DOI staff to coordinate efforts with other California regulatory agencies and other state insurance regulators across the U.S.
In a release, Jones said, "The Anthem breach underscores the need for insurance companies to take every precaution to protect their customers' information and make their consumers whole when a data breach occurs," adding, "We are working with other regulators and conducting a review to confirm that the company takes the appropriate steps to protect and assist consumers and guard against future breaches" (DOI release, 2/5).
Meanwhile, California Attorney General Kamala Harris (D) said consumers should take steps in response to the breach by:
  • Being wary of phone calls from individuals claiming to work for Anthem;
  • Considering placing a security freeze on credit files;
  • Contacting credit bureaus, which can put fraud alerts on their Social Security numbers and prevent the opening of new credit accounts; and
  • Reviewing credit reports for discrepancies (Bay City News, 2/5).

Do you remember those folders locked in a secure filing cabinet ?  Perhaps not as legible, but they were in one place....your provider's office.

For the complete story, more........

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HIPAA breach puts blame on business associate
A New York healthcare provider is notifying its patients that their medical data has been compromised after one of its business associates reported the theft of an employee-owned laptop and unencrypted smartphone.
An all too common occurrence.


ONC Officials Detail EHR Data-Sharing Goals 

Little Action Expected From Congress on Health IT: ONC 
Medscape Medical News
Medscape Medical News


State of the Union
President Barak Obama pontificates on his accomplishment for Healthcare


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Infographic: Online Healthcare Information Trends
Women are more likely than men to use telehealth services for urgent care after calling an urgent care hotline, according to a new infographic by iTriage. The infographic examines other key online healthcare information trends based on the use of iTriage's services, including top health concerns searched and the most searched medications. Online health information combined [...]

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