After learning of a data breach affecting nearly 80 million customers of insurer Anthem Inc., Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin is warning Rhode Islanders who may be affected.
Kilmartin has sent a letter to Anthem Inc. asking for additional information about the breach and what, if any, impact it will have on Rhode Island consumers. He also reminded the company that under Rhode Island General Law § 11-49.2-3, any agency or business, whether Rhode Island-based or not, must notify residents of Rhode Island whose information or identities may be compromised by a security breach in the most reasonable time possible and without unreasonable delay.
Anthem Inc. is the parent company of Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Connecticut. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield System consists of 37 independently operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield member companies. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) and Anthem Inc. are separate and distinct companies, though through various collaborative agreements some information on members could have been affected. At this time, it is not known whether any BCBSRI members are impacted by the Anthem breach. However, if consumers have received medical services in a state where Anthem operates, their data may be affected.
Anthem has confirmed that the company was the target of a sophisticated external cyber attack. Attackers gained unauthorized access to Anthem’s IT system and have obtained personal information from current and former members such as names, birthdays, medical IDs/social security numbers, street addresses, email addresses and employment information, including income data. The company stated that there is no evidence that credit card or medical information, such as claims, test results or diagnostic codes were targeted or compromised.
“Although early reports indicate that few Rhode Islanders may be affected by this latest data breach, since the hack exposed extremely sensitive information, I am gravely concerned,” said Kilmartin. “I have contacted Anthem to determine how many customers in our state were affected and what the company plans to do to better protect its customer data.”
Anthem has stated that the company will individually notify current and former members whose information has been accessed.
Anthem will also provide credit monitoring and identity protection services free of charge, and has created a dedicatedwebsite where members can access information such as frequent questions and answers. Additionally, there is a toll-free number that both current and former members can call if they have questions related to this incident: 1-877-263-7995. The website will be updated as more information is available.
Kilmartin offered the following helpful information to consumers who are customers of Anthem Inc.:
Attorney General Kilmartin also warns consumers to be on the lookout for signs of identity theft, which could include:
Consumers may contact the nationwide credit reporting agencies at
Equifax Experian TransUnion
(800) 525-6285 (888) 397-3742 (800) 680-7289
www.equifax.com www.experian.com www.transunion.com