Nation-Wide Respiratory Therapist Suffers Data Breach
Table of Contents
- By Steven
- Jan 17, 2023
Medical institutions have been facing a heightened risk of data breaches. We’ve seen constant reporting of hospitals, insurance companies, and therapy offices being hacked, and there is little we can do to stop it. The best steps to take are enhanced security measures, though this won’t stop everyone. It doesn’t matter how many firewalls or how much security you or your company have; nothing is unhackable.
How Did the Attack Occur?
When we think about data breaches and hacks, numerous ideas pop into our heads. We think about phishing scams, ransomware attacks, and nerds at computers with Twizzlers in their mouths and fire at their fingertips. This hack was most likely a firewall breach, as the breach was discovered after an unauthorized individual made odd movements inside the company’s systems. An investigation was immediately launched and found that on September 26, 2021, an unsanctioned party hacked into the systems. However, January 2023 saw Lincare finally taking steps to protect anyone that was potentially affected by offering protection.
What Information Was Viewed or Stolen?
We wish we could offer victims peace of mind. However, the list starts bad and only seems to get worse. The hacker accessed information including:
- Lincare account numbers
- Insurance details
- Medical information
- Social security numbers
- Prescription information
- And more
Now, if the hackers so chose, they could steal prescriptions and tax returns and use the victims’ insurance to pay for their own issues and procedures; or they may very well sell the information to others who will do the same things with them.
How Did Lincare Admit to the Breach?
Lincare has admitted to the breach multiple times, as the breach occurred a year and a half ago at the time of writing. There have been various articles about the breach, and the company has even sent notifications to the victims and the California State Attorney General’s Office.
What Will Become of the Stolen Information?
As with most other breaches, the hacker will most likely sell the information accessed in this breach. Medical records can go for 250 dollars each on the black market, making them one of the highest-valued pieces of stolen information on the dark web. Luckily for victims, Lincare is offering “complimentary credit monitoring services” from Kroll. While Kroll is not one of the big three credit bureaus, it still has a very good reputation, and it would be in everyone’s best interest to accept the offer.
What Should Affected Parties Do in the Aftermath of the Breach?
Patients affected by this breach must remember the danger they are now facing. Medical identity theft is a rampant issue, and it’s one that people pay far less attention to than they should. If you or a loved one were affected by this breach, a few steps are available for victims. The first step is often overlooked and highly underrated; file a police report. That way, if you do end up having your identity stolen, there will be a record to go off of. You can also get a free credit report each year from the big three credit bureaus, which means you can get three per year for free.