Anthem Health Security Breach Affects 80 Million Customers

Anthem Health Security Breach Affects 80 Million Customers

Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield 310x

Hackers made off with the health records, personal data of 80 million Anthem, Inc. customers.

If you thought the Sony Pictures and Target network breaches were bad, the health insurance business is about to blow you away.

Earlier this week, Anthem, Inc., who insures people in California, New York, and several other states, confirmed that they had suffered from a massive data breach. The hackers who perpetrated the attack made off with medical records and other sensitive information -- to the tune of 80 million Anthem customers and employees.

"Cyber attackers executed a very sophisticated attack to gain unauthorized access to one of Anthem's IT systems and have obtained personal information relating to consumers and Anthem employees who are currently covered, or who have received coverage in the past," said Anthem spokeswoman Kristin Binns to NBC News.

A pretty vague description of events, for sure. But the kind of information stolen includes names and addresses of customers and employees, their Social Security numbers, and the ID numbers they use as Anthem customers (meaning the number that would appear on your health insurance card).

Anthem has said it will offer credit monitoring services to any of its customers affected by the data breach, but such an offer might not be comprehensive enough. Health records aren't typically monitored by such services, so the ramifications of such a leak could be difficult to track (like if your ID number is used to cover hospital costs, etc.).

Medical ID theft isn't often in the spotlight, at least when compared to general ID theft, but it's a growing black market industry. NBC News says the number of Americans affected by such ID theft numbers about 1.84 million total (with about 315,000 total in 2013 alone). Such theft has an average financial impact of $19,000 per victim.

If you're a past or present Anthem customer, post up in the comments -- rage away, or let us know if you've been contacted.

Image Credit: HuffPo

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Devin Connors:
Anthem Health Security Breach Affects 80 Million Customers

Thank you for not using the hackers image for this.

Thank you again.

ThyNameIsMud:

Devin Connors:
Anthem Health Security Breach Affects 80 Million Customers

Thank you for not using the hackers image for this.

Thank you again.

Jonny Lee Miller is my bae.
-Devin

Is it just me or is everyone getting hacked right now? Even Nvidea was hacked recently, why the seemingly sudden boom in hacks of major companies?

A. The Link is to the wrong Post, or at least your title is incorrectly linking to the settlement. No 80 million facts in there.

B. Seriously, HuffPo? Even if you used the short abbreviation, which is HuffPost (which is what they use at the top of the site), it would be more professional to use "Huffington Post."

C. I wouldn't use a News Source as a professional source, like NBC News. You should be saying, "NBC News reported," with the link to their sources as well on top of it. NBC News can't say anything, because they are a news agency. By their very definition, they cannot make facts, they can only report on them.

Thanks!
Concerned reader.

Oh, seems that your health insurance was hacked.

If only free health care nullified your need for 80 million people to even have health insurance in the first place. :3c

Imper1um:
A. The Link is to the wrong Post, or at least your title is incorrectly linking to the settlement. No 80 million facts in there.

B. Seriously, HuffPo? Even if you used the short abbreviation, which is HuffPost (which is what they use at the top of the site), it would be more professional to use "Huffington Post."

C. I wouldn't use a News Source as a professional source, like NBC News. You should be saying, "NBC News reported," with the link to their sources as well on top of it. NBC News can't say anything, because they are a news agency. By their very definition, they cannot make facts, they can only report on them.

Thanks!
Concerned reader.

A) It's an image credit, not a source credit.
B) You knew it was Huffington Post by "HuffPo," which is not uncommon shorthand for the site.
C) Both references to NBC News were for additional information, not the story itself.

-Devin Connors

I am just waiting for one of the Five eyes to be hacked, just to wake more people up over the security issues posed by the indiscriminate collection and consolidation of big/meta-data. At the same time I am not unawares of how this could equally hurt me and others as well thus my reservation over the existence of such programs in the first place.

P.S. Why does it seem that BIG is such a popular prefix nowadays or has it always been this way and I am just noticing it now?

 

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