Premera Blue Cross, which serves the Pacific Northwest and Alaska, says it was hacked last May -- and its customers' claims and clinical data were exposed.
The breach, which affects 11 million customers, was discovered on January 29 of this year, the company says in a statement. That's the same day Anthem discovered its data breach, but a Premera Blue Cross spokesperson tells Insurance Networking News that it's not clear whether or not the two are related at this point.
At the time of the Anthem attack, Jim Grazko, the president of Premera's Alaska business told KTUU in Anchorage that the two insurers were separate entities and it was unlikely that Premera customers who stayed within the Premera system (getting treatment in Washington or Alaska) were exposed in that breach.
Early indications are that this breach included even more sensitive data than Anthem's: "Our investigation determined that the attackers may have gained unauthorized access to applicants and members’ information, which could include member name, date of birth, email address, address, telephone number, Social Security number, member identification numbers, bank account information, and claims information, including clinical information," Premera says in a statement. Clinical, payment and claims data were not part of the Anthem hack.
Like Anthem, Premera is working with the FBI and cybersecurity firm Mandiant to investigate the breach. The company also is offering two years of credit monitoring services to affected customers for free.
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