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Medical Company's Data Breach Impacts Millions in NY
In a recent development, a significant data breach has occurred within a leading medical company, impacting millions of individuals across New York. The breach has raised concerns regarding the security of personal and sensitive information, potentially exposing patients to identity theft risks.
In May, Perry Johnson & Associates, a Nevada-based business that transcribes and translates medical records for doctors and healthcare institutions, learned of a security breach that had affected their systems.
The data impacted includes some social security numbers, medical histories, financial data, and insurance and clinical information from medical transcription files. The company is currently investigating the incident to assess the extent of the breach and determine the number of affected individuals.
Northwell Health in Westchester County, New York City, and Long Island, as well as Crouse Health in Syracuse, were impacted in New York.
Authorities urge affected individuals to remain vigilant and take proactive measures to safeguard their identities and sensitive information.
The state Attorney General’s office reports that the majority of the persons impacted by the incident have received notification.
In a written statement last week, James added
Here are crucial steps one can take to prevent identity theft in the wake of such breaches:
- Monitor Financial Accounts Regularly: Keep a close eye on bank statements, credit card bills, and any financial transactions for suspicious activity. Report any discrepancies immediately to the respective financial institutions.
- Freeze Credit Reports: Consider freezing your credit reports to prevent unauthorized access. This restricts anyone, including identity thieves, from opening new accounts or loans in your name without your explicit permission.
- Enable Two-Factor Authentication: Enhance your online security by enabling two-factor authentication (2FA) wherever possible. This adds an extra layer of protection by requiring a second form of verification, usually a code sent to your phone or email.
- Place a fraud alert on your credit report: Fraud warnings instruct creditors and lenders to take further measures to confirm your identification before extending credit. Get in touch with any of the three main credit bureaus to set up a fraud alert.
- Obtain copies of your medical records: Get in touch with your physicians, clinics, healthcare providers, pharmacy, and insurance company to obtain copies of your medical records. Go over the data and look for anything unfamiliar. After reading, ask your healthcare professionals to make any necessary modifications and report any inaccuracies.
- Contest unrecognized medical billing: Contest anything you are unaware of since you can be responsible for the expense of medical care that culprits get in your name.
- Inform your insurance company: Inform your insurance company of any suspected fraud and find out if they have any special procedures for handling these kinds of cases. Get in touch with the Office of Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services if it has anything to do with Medicare.
- Update Passwords Regularly: Change passwords frequently, especially for sensitive accounts. Ensure they are strong, unique, and not easily guessable.
- Stay Informed and Educated: Keep yourself informed about the breach’s developments and follow recommendations provided by the medical company or relevant authorities. Educate yourself on best practices for online and offline security to minimize future risks.
- Consider Identity Theft Protection Services: Explore identity theft protection services that offer monitoring and alerts in case of suspicious activities related to your personal information.
As investigations continue into the data breach, affected individuals are encouraged to remain proactive in securing their personal information and promptly report any suspected fraudulent activity to authorities.
Such incidents highlight the critical need for robust cybersecurity measures to protect sensitive data and preserve individuals’ privacy.
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