Blue Cross physicians warned of data breach

Kay Lazar reports:

The largest health insurer in Massachusetts is warning roughly 39,000 physicians and other health care providers in the state that personal information, including Social Security numbers, may have been compromised after a laptop containing the data was stolen in August from an employee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association’s national headquarters in Chicago.

The breach involves “tens of thousands’’ of physicians nationwide, although the precise number is unclear, according to a national Blue Cross-Blue Shield spokesman. Thirty-nine affiliates feed information about providers into a database maintained by the association’s national headquarters.

Massachusetts doctors were not notified by letter until yesterday, because state Blue Cross-Blue Shield officials said they did not at first know what kind of data were on the stolen laptop. They said the data did not contain any information about patients or personal health records.

Read more in The Boston Globe.

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