US health insurance giant Banner Health has said that details of up to 3.7 million patients and staff were accessed during a cyber incident at the company.
The firm said that it first discovered the hack on 7 July after finding that payment systems at a number of food outlets in its facilities had been accessed, and that payment data, including cardholder names, card numbers and verification codes, were compromised.
Banner Health then discovered on 13 July that the attackers had also got hold of sensitive patient and staff information.
“The patient and health plan information may have included names, birth dates, addresses, physicians’ names, dates of service, claims information, and possibly health insurance information and Social Security numbers, if provided to Banner Health,” the company said in a statement.
“The physician and provider information may have included names, addresses, dates of birth, Social Security numbers and other identifiers they may use.”
Banner Health admitted that an investigation of the hack revealed that it was initiated on 17 June, and seemingly went undetected for at least three weeks.
“Banner Health worked quickly to block the attackers and is working to enhance the security of its systems in order to help prevent this happening in the future,” the firm added.
“Banner Health is also working with the payment card networks so banks that issue payment cards can be made aware and initiate heightened monitoring on the affected cards.”
The firm also said that affected customers will be given one year’s access to financial monitoring services in a bid to limit the damaging effects of the hack.
The theft is just the latest in a string of major breaches to hit companies in all industries, and another in the healthcare insurance market after Anthem was attacked last year in an incident that exposed 80 milion customer records.
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