Short-term monitoring inadequate for Banner, Anthem data breaches – BizWest Editorial

If BizWest Media‘s editors think that what Banner and Anthem offered in the wake of their breaches isn’t enough, they’d likely be totally appalled that Athens Orthopedic Clinic hasn’t offered its patients any credit monitoring.  Here’s how the BizWest Media editorial begins:

Short-term monitoring inadequate for Banner, Anthem data breaches

It’s not enough.

Banner Health recently revealed in letters to customers that “cyber attackers may have gained unauthorized access to information stored on a limited number of Banner Health computer servers.” Accessed data may have included patient names, birth dates, Social Security numbers, addresses, physician names, dates of service, clinical information, health-insurance information, members of patient health plans and more.

Banner’s announcement came quickly — three weeks after it says it discovered the breach — but the remedy is sorely lacking. Banner has offered those affected one year of free credit and identity monitoring. That falls short of the two years offered by Anthem BlueCross BlueShield after records of more than 70 million customers were exposed in 2015. Anthem now has offered credit and identity protection for life — but only if those affected remain Anthem members. Sign up for a new plan and the protection goes away.

Clearly, credit and identity protection for one year is inadequate. Even two years doesn’t cut it, not when data that’s been compromised includes Social Security numbers, the No. 1 data point needed to initiate new credit. Add in all of the other information exposed in the breaches, and there’s little left to the imagination for hackers.

Anthem’s current model of cutting someone off from credit and identity monitoring if they switch plans also is irresponsible.

Read the full editorial on BizWest.

Anyone care to estimate how many times I proposed entities pool their resources to provide credit monitoring for everyone?

Now consider this finding from a recent Ponemon study:

 To minimize the financial consequences, some healthcare organizations have purchased data breach insurance policies. One-third of healthcare organizations have a data breach insurance policy and 29 percent of business associates have a cyber breach insurance policy. Fifty-seven percent of healthcare organizations and 52 percent of business associates say they purchase up to $5 million in coverage. Insurance typically covers external attacks by cyber criminals (56 percent of healthcare respondents and 57 percent of business associates) and incidents affecting business partners, vendors or other third parties that have access to the organizations information assets (48 percent of healthcare respondents and 52 percent of business associates).

What happens to the patients or members of the two-thirds of healthcare organizations that don’t have insurance? We need only look at Athens Orthopedic Clinic’s claims that it cannot afford to provide any credit monitoring services to get an example of how patients may spend the rest of their lives having to protect themselves with no real help from the organization they trusted their information to.

So…. if car owners are required to carry liability insurance in many states, should entities be required to carry insurance for data breaches?


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Has one comment to “Short-term monitoring inadequate for Banner, Anthem data breaches – BizWest Editorial”

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  1. looeeznga - August 20, 2016

    The only answer to this question?

    Hell yes, they should.

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