13.5M Californians Affected by Anthem Cyberattack, Officials Says
On Tuesday, Anthem officials said about 13.5 million Californians were involved in a recent data breach that affected 78.8 million of the insurer's customers, former customers and employees across the U.S., the Los Angeles Times reports.
The breach -- which included names, Social Security numbers, dates of birth and other personal data -- was disclosed earlier this month (Terhune, Los Angeles Times, 2/24).
Anthem President and CEO Joseph Swedish said that hackers "gained access to [the insurer's] computer system and took information including names, birthdays, medical IDs/Social Security numbers, street addresses, email addresses and employment information, including income data."
The company has not yet identified the source of the cyberattack, but it could be the largest ever reported by a health care company and one of the largest breaches of customers' personal information (California Healthline, 2/9).
According to the Los Angeles Times, Anthem is still investigating the magnitude of the breach and has lowered its estimate of affected individuals slightly to 78.8 million people, down from 80 million (Los Angeles Times, 2/24).
Details of Affected Californians
Darrel Ng -- a spokesperson for Anthem Blue Cross, the insurer's California branch -- said the 13.5 million affected Californians include:
- Current and former enrollees in Anthem Blue Cross; and
- Additional residents covered by other Blue Cross Blue Shield plans through out-of-state employers or other arrangements (Rauber, "Bay Area BizTalk," San Francisco Business Times, 2/24).