Anthem is in the spotlight once again: This time, for fallout relating to its historic data breach. Twenty-six individuals have hit the Indianapolis-based health insurer with lawsuits that claim they were victims of fraud due to the breach, reports the Indianapolis Business Journal.
One woman claims someone used her personal information from Anthem's records to sign up for credit cards, while another woman says someone bought coverage in her name on Georgia's state-run health insurance exchange.
The data breach that hit Anthem earlier this year compromised information for 80 million customers, FierceHealthPayer has reported. While nine of the 26 lawsuits include a claim of specific damages, Anthem states that the company is not the root of the problem.
"As part of the ongoing investigation regarding Anthem's cyber attack, the FBI has been routinely monitoring for fraudulent activity related to this incident," Anthem spokeswoman Kristin Binns wrote in an email to the newspaper. "Despite allegations to the contrary, there is no evidence that the cyber attackers have shared or sold any individuals' data; and there is no evidence that fraud has occurred against any individuals who could have been impacted."
The FBI sends the insurer weekly reports to alert Anthem if anyone is selling information from the hack on the black market. Figuring out who is right in the end will determine whether Anthem pays damages in these cases, added IBJ.
Having specific claims of damages could help the plaintiffs prevail, but the issue at hand is proving it was the Anthem data breach that caused the recent identity theft, Jeff Kosc, a litigator and partner at the Indianapolis office of Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff LLP, told IBJ.
While the FBI has yet to publicly confirm the culprit behind Anthem's data hack, there's speculation that a Chinese state-sponsored hacker group may have carried out the breach, FierceHealthIT previously reported.
- here's the IBJ article