Health insurer Anthem Inc, which earlier this month reported that it was hit by a massive cyberbreach, said on Tuesday that 8.8 million to 18.8 million people who were not its customers could be victims in the attack.
Anthem, the country’s second-largest health insurer, is part of a national network of independently run Blue Cross Blue Shield plans through which BCBS customers can receive medical services when they are in an area where BCBS is operated by a different company.
It is those Blue Cross Blue Shield customers who were potentially affected because their records may be included in the database that was hacked, the company said.
It is the first time that Anthem has quantified the impact of the breach on members of health insurance plans that it does not operate.
Anthem updated the total number of records accessed in the database to 78.8 million customers from its initial estimate of 80 million, which includes 14 million incomplete records that it found.
Anthem does not know the exact number of Anthem versus non-Anthem customers affected by the breach because of those incomplete records, which prevent it from linking all members with their plan, Anthem spokeswoman Kristin Binns said.
Security experts are warning that healthcare and insurance companies are especially vulnerable to cybercriminals who want to steal personal information to sell on the underground market.
Anthem continued to estimate that tens of millions of customer records were stolen, rather than simply accessed. The spokeswoman added that the company’s investigation was ongoing. Federal and state authorities are also investigating.
Anthem runs Blue Cross Blue Shield healthcare plans in 14 states, while plans in states such as Texas and Florida are run independently. In all, 37 companies cover about 105 million people under the Blue Cross Blue Shield license.
Binns said the company still believes the hacked data were restricted to names, dates of birth, member ID/Social Security numbers, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and employment information such as income data.
Anthem will start mailing letters next week to Anthem customers and other Blue Cross Blue Shield members affected by the hacking. It will offer two years of identity theft repair assistance, credit monitoring, identity theft insurance and fraud detection.
(Reporting by Caroline Humer; Additional reporting by Jim Finkle in Boston; Editing by G Crosse, J Benkoe and Cynthia Osterman)
Pence abruptly canceled trip because person he was meeting was about to be busted by the feds
The White House abruptly canceled a planned trip to New Hampshire to prevent Vice President Mike Pence from being seen with somebody about to be busted for interstate drug trafficking of fentanyl, Politico reported Monday.
"Among the problems was a federal law enforcement probe involving individuals Pence would likely encounter, according to a law enforcement official briefed on the incident. If Pence stepped off the vice presidential aircraft, one of the people he would have seen on the ground was under investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration for moving more than $100,000 of fentanyl from Massachusetts to New Hampshire," Politico reported.
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Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló was outed for cold and heartless comments he exchanged about his own island in wake of the horrific hurricanes that destroyed the island in 2017. He's also being forced to ask questions about the corruption involving the funding for hurricane relief. Nearly 1 million people have taken to the streets demanding accountability and action.
In his first interview, Rosselló may have assumed he'd meet a friendly audience on Fox News, but Shep Smith let him have it.
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Angry protesters blocked the main road in Puerto Rico's capital on Monday as they launched what was expected to be the largest yet of a wave of demonstrations seeking the resignation of the US territory's embattled governor.
Marching under sunny skies in San Juan, the demonstrators sang, chanted, danced and carried the territory's red, white and blue flag with a lone star.
Altogether, hundreds of thousands were expected to turn out.
Puerto Ricans are up in arms over alleged corruption involving money meant to be for victims of Hurricane Maria in 2017, which left nearly 3,000 dead.