Privacy, Breach, Data Security

RIPTA, United Healthcare sued for data breach

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority and United Healthcare have been sued in relation to a data breach that impacted Rhode Island's public bus service in August 2021, which has compromised data belonging to nearly 22,000 individuals, The Associated Press reports. Nearly 5,000 RIPTA workers and retirees, as well as thousands of other state employees, had their Medicare identification numbers and Social Security numbers exfiltrated from RIPTA's computer system, with the compromised information coming from state employee health plan provider United Healthcare. RIPTA and United Healthcare have been accused of negligence and violations of state laws involving personal data protections. The lawsuit also sought that both defendants be given a court order mandating stronger cybersecurity measures. RIPTA has also been asked to respond to queries about why it had information from non-employees, as well as the delayed notification of the breach. "When an individuals confidential personal and health care information is compromised, that individual will have to worry about the potential for identity theft which could lead to financial ruin by impacting their savings, livelihood, credit score, and access to health care," said ACLU attorney Peter Wasylyk.

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