Anthem Inc. is one of the biggest american health insurance companies. This wednesday, their servers suffered a large scale cyber attack. The attack created a data breach that resulted in a large number of records containing private information of Anthem’s workers and customers (including the CEO himself) to be stolen. Joseph R. Swedish, CEO of Anthem, said in a statement that there’s no evidence of credit card info or medical information to be compromised.
The data stolen consists in personal information as names, birthdays, medical IDs/social security numbers, street addresses, email addresses and employment information. Swedish described the attack suffered by the company’s server system as “sophisticated” and assured that the breach has been fixed as soon as the problem was discovered and the FBI has been contacted. Investigations are already in course. There’s no information about the exact size of the stolen data, but the Wall Street Journal reported of tens of millions of records stolen. That would make this one of the largest data leaks involving an U.S. insurer.
Anthem will notify individually any person whose information has been compromised. In addition, Anthem created a website for the purpose of assisting the people affected by the attack to gain access to information about the breach. In alternative, a toll free number can be used for assistance ( 877-263-7995 ). Credit monitoring and identity preservation services will be offered from the company to the affected subjects, free of charge.
Hackers targeting health care companies is nothing new. FBI warned last august that the U.S. health care industry – worth 3 trillion dollars – is becoming more and more the target of cyber criminals. That makes sense considering that medical information sell for something like 20$ each in some forums on the darkest side of internet (for comparison, stolen credit card info sell for one quarter as much). It’s likely that medical information were in the crosshair of the hackers that targeted Anthem. Luckily, for what we know now, the attackers didn’t succeed in gaining access to the desired information.
Do you think that this attack is a once in a while problem or you share the same worries the FBI does? Do you think it should have been done more to help those affected by the attack? Let us know what you think in the comments.