Health Net Report Data Breach Affecting 1.9M Current, Past Enrollees
Written by Ct R. Hamith   
Monday, 18 April 2011 07:11

On Monday, Health Net announced that it has lost digital record containing personal data on about 1.9 million current and former policyholder, including 845,000 Californians, the San Diego Union - Tribune reports.

The California Department of Managed Health Care announced that the breach affects 622,000 California residents enrolled in Health Net HMOs and 223,000 Californians enrolled in Health Net PPOs and other plans.

The incident is Health Net’s second security breach in two years. In 2009, Health Net’s Connecticut office lost a portable hard drive that contained health and financial data on 1.5 million policyholders (Lavelle, san Diego Union – Tribune, 3/14).


Details on Lost Data

According to DMHC, Health Net reported that nine server drives went missing from its data center in Rancho Cordova.

Health Net said the missing drives contained personal data on its employees, health care providers and policyholders. The insurer noted that the data might have included:-

  • Names;
  • Social Security Numbers;
  • Addresses;
  • Health information; and
  • Financial information (Glover, Sacramento Bee, 3/15).


Health Net said it discovered the breach when it received a notification that IBM – which handles the insurer’s IT infrastructure – could not locate the server drives (San Diego Union – The Tribune, 3/14).



Health Net Response to Breach

On March 4, the insurer notified the Connecticut Office of the Attorney General about the latest breach by telephone. On March 14, Health Net issued a public note about the incident (Goedert, Health Data Management, 3/14).

Health Net said it is notifying affected individuals “out of an abundance of caution” (Clark, HealthLeader Media, 3/15). The health plan would not say whether the drives were stolen (APISan Francisco Chronicle, 3/14).

Health Net said it would offer two years of no-cost credit monitoring and fraud resolution services to affected individuals. The insurer also said it would offer credit restoration and identity theft insurance if needed (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 3/14).

March 15, 2011-
California Healthcare Foundation by The Advisory Board Company.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 21 April 2011 06:54 )

Did You Know

arrow Identity theft is the top consumer complaint in the USA according to the Federal Trade Commission.

arrow US consumers reported fraud loss totalling more than $1.1 billion in 2006.

arrow Credit card fraud (25%) was the most common form of reported identity theft in the US in 2006.

arrow More than 100 000 people are affected by identity theft each year in the UK

arrow According to Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, more than 350 data loss incidents involving more than 140 million records have occurred since February 2005

arrow Organisations are obliged by law to take take adequate steps to ensure the proper disposal of data

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