About 18K doctors may have had Social Security numbers exposed

Share this article:

About 18,000 doctors are being notified that the Blue Shield of California inadvertently included their Social Security numbers in rosters it is required to provide to the Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC), which are viewable by the public.

How many victims? About 18,000, according to reports

What type of personal information? Names, business addresses, business telephone numbers, medical groups, practice areas, and Social Security numbers.

What happened? The Blue Shield of California inadvertently included Social Security numbers in rosters it is required to provide to the DMHC. The rosters are public documents.

What was the response? DMHC has acquired and installed data loss prevention software to scan all documents submitted to the DMHC via its electronic filing system, in order to alert if confidential information is included. Blue Shield has revised procedures for preparing and submitting provider rosters to DMHC, which includes multiple levels of data review and validation before filing. All impacted individuals are being notified, and offered a free year of monitoring services.

Details: The DMHC discovered on May 16 that the Blue Shield of California inadvertently included the Social Security numbers in rosters provided in February, March and April of 2013.

Quote: “We have no reason to believe that your personal information has been misused,” Sarah Ream, privacy officer with DMHC, wrote in the notification.

Source: oag.ca.gov, “BSC/DMHC Provider Notification Letter,” July 2014.

Share this article:
You must be a registered member of SC Magazine to post a comment.
close

Next Article in The Data Breach Blog

Sign up to our newsletters

POLL

More in The Data Breach Blog

Florida medical center hit with breach for third time in two years

Aventura Hospital and Medical Center has reported a data breach for the third time in two years.

Tampa General Hospital breach impacts hundreds of patients

Tampa General Hospital is notifying 675 patients that their personal information may have been accessed, without authorization, by a former employee.

George Mason University travel system targeted for malware attack

The incident could have exposed the names and Social Security numbers of users, although no evidence has surfaced to suggest that's the case.