Anthem Health Care is latest hacking victim, millions of users could be compromised

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It's another year and time for a new set of companies to be compromised. In 2014 we witnessed high-profile attacks on victims such as Home Depot and Target, but 2015 is shaping up to be no better, given the recent news regarding Anthem, a major health care provider in the US. The potential implications of this one are still mostly unknown.

However, reports are surfacing that perhaps millions of users have been compromised. Data such as names and social security numbers have been lost. The company isn't yet citing numbers, but does admit that all of its branches were affected. According to security researcher Brian Krebs that could mean a catastrophe.

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"Given the company’s size, this breach could end up impacting tens of millions of Americans" Krebs states in his analysis of the available information. Meanwhile the BBC points out that "The attackers stole names, addresses, birthdays and social security numbers of customers from every one of Anthem's business units".

Anthem is now in full damage control mode. The company has issued a statement that begins "Safeguarding your personal, financial and medical information is one of our top priorities, and because of that, we have state-of-the-art information security systems to protect your data. However, despite our efforts, Anthem was the target of a very sophisticated external cyber attack".

The health care provider does point out in detail all of the information potentially stolen. The company also claims that once the breach was discovered it made an effort secure things and also contacted the FBI. The statement was issued by Joseph Swedish, CEO of Anthem, who goes on to claim that employee data, including his own, was also potentially stolen.

Swedish ends by issuing an apology to everyone. While that doesn't make things any better, it is at least more than some arrogant companies have done in these situations.

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