On Friday, February 6, 2015, Goldman Scarlato & Penny’s client appeared on the CBS Morning News. On the program, he discussed how identity theft, which allegedly resulted from the hacking of under-protected data from his health care provider, has impacted his life.
Community Health Services (“CHS”) owns and operates over 200 general acute care hospitals in 29 states. In the regular course of business, CHS collects and maintains control of a wide variety of private, patient information, including but not limited to patient credit card, medical or clinical information and history, patient names, addresses, birthdates, telephone numbers and Social Security numbers. CHS is entrusted to protect the privacy of each patient’s information.
Community Health allegedly failed to protect its patients’ private information, when, in the spring of 2014, its databases were hacked and private information, including patients’ names, addresses, passwords and Social Security Numbers were stolen. According to CHS, this theft involved at least 4.5 million patients.
Unfortunately, the hackers who stole the data from CHS, may have sold it to those intent on stealing the identity of CHS’ patients, including GSP’s client. The person who acquired the private information appears to have used it to hack into the Firm’s client’s email account, change passwords repeatedly, used information in the email account to identify financial assets and credit accounts, and has further used it to communicate with financial institutions and others to set up new accounts in GSP’s client’s name.
As a result of the hacking of CHS’ allegedly under-protected private information and the resulting identity theft, GSP’s client witnessed $40,000 in unlawful charges placed on his credit cards. At least two applications for foreign exchange accounts were submitted in his name. The thief even tried to use 70,000 frequent flyer points earned by the Firm’s client to book travel for himself.
Please view the video, a first hand account of what happens when you are the victim of identity theft, shown on this excerpt from the CBS Morning News:
Unfortunately, health care providers have become frequent targets of hackers, which are not doing enough to protect patients’ private information. Just this week, Anthem Health announced that 80 million records were stolen, including names, addresses and Social Security numbers.
If you have experienced identity theft as a result of the under-protection of your private information, contact Mark Goldman at [email protected], at Goldman Scarlato & Penny, to discuss your rights. (484) 342-0700.