Stanford Health Network Announces MOVEit Breach

  • By Steven
  • Nov 20, 2023

MOVEit Breach Announcement

Stanford Health Care Alliance encompasses children’s hospitals, care plans, medicine partners, scholars, and the Stanford University faculty. The breach allegedly includes information from Stanford Health Care, Stanford Tri-Valley, Stanford Medicine Partners, Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, and Packard Children’s Health Alliance. 

How Did the Attack Occur? 

Differing operational systems often require auxiliary software to assist in the moving of data and files. One popular file transfer software is Progress Software’s MOVEit Transfer tool. The software gives an operator fluid and comprehensive file management options, resulting in global application use across industries. In May of this year, however, MOVEit was found to have a zero-day vulnerability within its security. Subsequently, cyberattacks secretly ravaged systems around the world. Although the security problems have dissolved, organizations remain enthralled with investigations; Stanford Health’s network is one institution of thousands impacted by the global breach. 

What Information Was Viewed or Stolen? 

The specific information taken in the breach is unknown, but there are hints if one knows where to look. For example, although the Maine Attorney General’s office filing does not list impacted details, it gives a notice sample. The consumer notice suggests taking preventative actions, including investing in identity monitoring services and alerts; subsequently, the stolen information may have included data related to these credentials. The consumer notice listed not be the only version. Those with children on their medical plan may have to take preventative action for their kids and themselves.

How Did Stanford Health Admit to the Breach? 

Stanford’s breach was not a direct attack but an event that occurred to their third-party online wellness program, Welltok. Around May 30th, Progress Software announced MOVEit’s vulnerabilities, but not until a month later, was Welltok was alerted to potential impacts. (Though the Maine filing says discovery happened in early October.) Welltok launched an investigation in response and, around August 11th, determined the scope of the assaults. Consumers believed to be impacted were purportedly sent notices around October 17th; this could be erroneous, however, with notices sent in early November.

What Will Become of the Stolen Information? 

The attackers could misuse member data in various ways; they could ransom it to Stanford or put it up for sale on dark forums; they could use it for impersonations, fraud, or as a criminal scapegoat. Maine’s filing lists the impact figure as high as 1,648,848; the individuals are members of Welltok’s “voluntary online wellness program” that encourages healthy lifestyles for Stanford associates. Further, because there is limited information about the breach, it is unclear if the stolen data relates to only group members.

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

Those associated with Stanford’s online health wellness lifestyle program must take action. There is no evidence of data misuse, but that may soon change depending on the assailants’ motivations. Members should implement information defenses like account monitoring and fraud alerts. They should also update their devices, enable multi-factor authenticators, and entrust their passwords to an accredited manager. No one knows what may happen to the data in the future; taking precautions now may mitigate damages.

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