Medford, Oregon-based Hematology Oncology Associates recently began notifying patients of a potential data breach, caused by a months-long phishing attack.
On March 19, officials said they first detected the phishing incident and worked to quickly secure the compromised account. The investigation determined the first email account hack began on December 18, 2018, with additional accounts becoming compromised through February 22, 2019.
The investigation concluded on April 20, alongside third-party forensics investigators. However, officials said they were unable to rule out whether any of the emails and attachments were accessed by the hackers.
The potentially compromised data included patient names, Social Security numbers, driver’s licenses, health insurance member and group numbers, dates of birth, financial account data, and payment card information. All patients will receive a year of free credit monitoring services.
All employee email accounts have since received a forced password change, and officials said they’re reinforcing employee phishing training.
A coding error on a patient mailing recently resulted in the impermissible disclosure of protected health information for 2,404 Health Net of California patients.
During a March 1 mail merge, a coding error caused a misalignment that resulted in letters being printed and sent to the wrong plan subscribers. The error impacted mailings sent through March 12. Those letters contained patient demographic details, Health Net ID numbers, plan names, group numbers, the names and ages of dependents and the name and address of primary care providers.
The last four digits of dependents’ social Security numbers were breached, as well.
Since the security event, officials said they’ve fixed the coding error and added improved security measures for its mailings, such as testing scenarios and a checklist to ensure errors are caught prior to letters being sent to patients.
More than 20 boxes of Today’s Vision patient records were found in a Texas dumpster this week, including a wide range of health information. Today’s Vision owns and operates over 50 optometry clinics in the state.
According to officials, it appears the boxes originated from a Willowbrook location, which is no longer in operation and was recently sold to MyEyeDr. Prior to the sale, the location was operated by Donald Glenz, MD. He told local news outlet KPRC that he’s unaware of how the files ended up in the dumpster.
The files contained a trove of sensitive health information for patients who received treatment and services at the Willowbrook location between 1997 and 2013, including staff. The compromised data includes a trove of data, from health conditions and payment information, to health histories and Social Security numbers.
The security incident is under investigation by MyEyeDr and the Department of Health and Human Services to determine what occurred and find who is responsible. The police department is also investigating, and the boxes will be securely stored for the duration of the analysis.