St. Luke’s Health Data Breach Affects More Than 16,000 Individuals

  • By Steven
  • Nov 09, 2022

St. Luke’s Health Data Breach

Milwaukee hospital, Aurora St. Luke's Medical Center, has suffered a massive data breach that involves 16,906 individuals. Contrary to initial speculation, the violation has nothing to do with the ransomware attack that hit its parent company, Aurora Advocate Health, in October 2022. However, there is still much reason to be concerned, as the data leaked here was also incredibly susceptible to attack.

How Did the Attack Occur?

The breach occurred when St. Luke's third-party consulting service, Adelanto Healthcare Ventures (AHCV), suffered a data breach. St. Luke's was alerted to the breach on September 1, 2022, and began the investigation immediately. The study initially showed no medical information involved in the violation, but ongoing research found that there was far more involved than initially thought.

What Information Was Viewed or Stolen?

Most of the stolen data included names, social security numbers, birthdays, addresses, Medicaid numbers, medical records, and dates of service. The stolen information also pertained to specific medical data, including treatment and diagnosis details. While many cyber attacks can come of this hack, a massive worry that too many people forget about in today’s digital age is real-life attacks such as assault and kidnapping. While we hear about it often on the news, the main consensus is usually, “it won’t happen to me.” Now, the hack’s victims are at heightened risk.

How Did St. Luke’s Admit to the Breach?

St. Luke’s admitted to the data breach by sending out notification letters to the affected individuals. The notice read, “An initial investigation by AHCV indicated that no protected health information had been exposed.” It added, “However, after further review, AHCV determined that the compromised email accounts contained St. Luke’s Health protected health information and notified St. Luke’s Health of its new findings on September 1, 2022.” 

What Will Become of the Stolen Information?

There have been tons of data breaches with similar information stolen. Names, emails, addresses, social security numbers, and medical information are often highly sought-after information for hackers. Bad actors can launch numerous scams and attacks with this kind of information. Phishing and smishing scams are the most popular hacks, but there are other things that the victims may be targeted by; identity theft is another massive issue because of the social security number and address leakage.

What Should Affected Parties Do in the Aftermath of the Breach?

Though the media often tells us that we’re doomed once our information is out there, this isn’t entirely accurate. While it is unlikely your information will ever be completely safe, there are quite a few steps that one can take– incredibly easily, we may add– that can help to protect you and your loved ones. If you were affected by the breach, we recommend downloading device-protecting software and monitoring credit reports. We also recommend taking as many steps as possible in the real world to keep yourself safe.

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