Anthem’s Speedy Breach Detection Likely To Ease Liability

February 5, 2015 – In The News

Scott L. Vernick was quoted in the Law360 article, “Anthem's Speedy Breach Detection Likely To Ease Liability.” Full text can be found in the February 5, 2015, issue, but a synopsis is below.

Anthem Inc., the nation’s second largest health insurer, disclosed Wednesday that the company had suffered a “very sophisticated attack” at the hands of cyberattackers.

The hacked system contained names, addresses, birthdays, Social Security numbers, income data and other personal information of approximately 80 million current and former customers and employees, but the company’s quick detection of the intrusion could help to stave off some scrutiny it will face from both class action and bar regulators.

While the company stressed it did not appear hackers gained access to credit card numbers or health information, attorneys noted that the type of information that was accessed could easily be used for identity theft.

“There are a few things that are clear from this breach: that companies that are data rich in personally identifiable information which can be used to commit identity theft and financial fraud remain attractive targets, that cybercriminals are extremely aggressive, and that if you’re paying attention and have some robust data security protocols in place, you can’t necessarily prevent what happens, but you can put yourself in a position to respond in a very effective way,” said Scott L. Vernick, a noted privacy attorney.

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