Another Insurance Carrier Data Breach

Premera Blue Cross Blue Shield, a health insurance company in operating primarily in Alaska, Oregon and Washington, announced this week it discovered a data breach of its system.  Premera said it discovered the breach on January 29, 2015, the same date of the Anthem data breach, but just announced the breach to the public on March 17, 2015, the date it began mailing legally-required notices to affected individuals.  By contrast, Anthem informed the media of its breach on February 13.  Some have speculated that the two cyber-attacks may be related, but nothing has been confirmed at this point.  Premera is assisting the FBI’s investigation into the attack.

Premera announced that a wide range of data was compromised as part of a “sophisticated cyberattack.”  That data includes names, dates of birth, addresses, email addresses, phone numbers, Social Security numbers, member IDs, bank account information, and claims information.

Any Premera members, applicants or business partners could be affected, dating back to 2002.  Additionally, any Blue Cross Blue Shield plan member who used their “Blue Card” to receive medical treatment in Washington or Alaska since 2002 could be affected.

Like Anthem, Premera is offering two years of free credit monitoring and identify theft protection services to all affected individuals.  For additional information, see Premera’s data breach website at www.premeraupdate.com.

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