Health Data is Hot
A string of high-profile data breaches have hit health insurers this year. As many as 11 million Premera Blue Cross customers’ medical data was exposed by a hack in January. Anthem faced a bigger hit that may have exposed personal information of 80 million current and former customers. The next victims were CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, which disclosed an intrusion that compromised 1.1 million customers’ data, and UCLA Health, which was hit by a breach affecting 4.5 million people. The latest to discover an infiltration is Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, in a theft affecting personal records of 10 million people.
Criminal attacks on healthcare providers have more than doubled in the past five years, and nearly 90 percent of healthcare providers were hit by breaches in the past two years, according to the Fifth Annual Benchmark Study on Privacy and Security of Healthcare Data by the Ponemon Institute.