Hospital and Medical Clinic Data Breaches: Who’s Affected?
- Health care related data breaches increased by more than 50 percent in 2020.
- Fill out the form on this page if your information was compromised from 2019 to the present.
Due to a sharp increase in health care data breaches, countless patients may have had their information compromised. When hackers target hospital systems, these criminals can steal and sell patient information such as personal identifiers, insurance information, and other important data.
Some patients have accused health care providers of lax cybersecurity data breach lawsuits filed against the hospitals and other health care providers. Patients in these cases argue that some hospitals and clinics failed to protect patient information — making it easy for hackers to access sensitive data.
Some recent medical data breaches include:
- CarePointe ENT (Indiana)
- Community Care Plan (Florida)
- Metro Infectious Disease Consultants (Illinois)
- MultiPlan (New York)
- Orlando Family Physicians (Florida)
- San Andreas Regional Center (California)
- UF Health Central Florida
- UNM Health (New Mexico)
Cyberattacks on Hospital Systems
2020 was a historic year for a number of reasons, including a drastic increase in the number of hospital cyber attacks. There were 599 healthcare data breaches in 2020 — a 55.1 percent increase from 2019 — according to a report from Bitglass, a cloud security company.
The majority of these incidents can be linked to hacking or IT issues. Bitglass reveals that 67.3 percent of 2020 healthcare data breaches were caused by one of these two causes. This is more than three times the amount caused by the third most common cause, unauthorized disclosures.
Are Hospitals To Blame?
Lax cybersecurity by healthcare companies may make them attractive targets for bad actors. Poor security measures may make it easier for hackers to access sensitive patient databases. While hospitals have a duty to protect patient information, some health care providers may fail to employ reasonable cybersecurity measures. Some patients have criticized hospitals for these subpar measures.
Hospital data breach incidents may also be linked to poor personnel training if hackers access databases through phishing emails. For example, an Alomere Health security breach from 2019 compromised patient names, addresses, birth dates, insurance information, and more after hackers used two employee accounts to access private databases.
Hospitals’ responses to data breaches have also been criticized by affected patients. In many cases, it takes a long time for hospitals to identify a breach and even longer for them to recover.
According to Bitglass’s report, it took an average of 96 days for healthcare organizations to identify breaches in 2020 and an average of 263 days to recover. Unfortunately, this lost time can cause damages while patient information is unknowingly traded on the dark web.
Hospital Data Breach Lawsuit
Some patients have taken legal action against hospitals following data breaches. Plaintiffs in these cases allege that hospitals and healthcare organizations failed to sufficiently protect their information, which led to the massive breaches.
In May 2020, several patients filed a class action lawsuit against Health Quest, a nonprofit healthcare corporation that operates hospitals on the East Coast. A phishing incident in July 2018 allegedly compromised the information of 28,910 patients, including health insurance information.
Despite learning of the incident in 2018, Health Quest allegedly failed to warn patients about the breach until late May or early June 2019 after nearly one year of investigation. In January 2020, Health Quest announced that further investigation revealed even more information had been stolen.
According to the Health Quest patients, the data breach could have been avoided if Health Quest invested in better cybersecurity measures.
“The Security Breach was caused and enabled by Defendant’s violation of its obligations to abide by best practices and industry standards concerning the security of patients records and payment information,” the hospital data breach lawsuit contends.
“Defendant failed to comply with security standards and allowed their customers’ Private Information to be compromised by cutting corners on security measures that could have prevented or mitigated the security breach that occurred,” the Health Quest class action lawsuit said.
In March 2021, plaintiffs filed another class action lawsuit against a Pittsburg-area hospital and its collections firm after 36,000 patients had data compromised in a breach. The breach allegedly compromised personal information such as social security numbers, birth dates, bank account numbers, driver’s license numbers, and more.
The lead plaintiffs in the hospital data breach lawsuit claim that they experienced suspicious activity on their bank accounts following the breach.
Get a Hospital Data Breach Class Action Lawsuit Claim Review
If your information was compromised as a result of a hospital data breach, you may qualify for a health care data breach class action lawsuit claim review.
Fill out the form on this page for a FREE case evaluation.
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