Medical, Personal Information Exposed at Premera Blue Cross

As the latest health insurer to be breached, Premera Blue Cross has revealed that it discovered a sophisticated cyber attack that tried to gain unauthorized access to their IT systems on January 29, 2015. The initial attack occurred on May 5, 2014. The company notified the FBI and is working with the cybersecurity firm Mandiant to investigate and repair the damage done by the attack.

Attackers may have gained unauthorized access to applicants and members’ information, which could include member name, date of birth, email address, address, telephone number, Social Security number, member identification numbers, bank account information, and claims information, including clinical information, Premera said.

“About 6 million of the people whose accounts were accessed are residents of Washington state, where customers include employees of Amazon.com Inc, Microsoft Corp and Starbucks Corp, according to Premera. The rest are scattered across every U.S. state,” Reuters reports.

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As explained by KrebsOnSecurity, “Mandiant specializes in tracking and blocking attacks from state-sponsored hacking groups, particularly those based in China.”

It goes on, “There are indications that this may be the work of the Chinese espionage group tied to the breach disclosed earlier this year at Anthem, an intrusion that affected some 78 million Americans.”

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