Hackers Access Anthem Database
Healthcare insurer Anthem reported that computer hackers gained access to personal information of its 80 million customers. The cyber-thieves stole names, social security numbers, addresses, email addresses, phone numbers, employee information, and income information.
**UPDATE** SEPTEMBER 2017
Important information about the Anthem Data Breach Class Action Settlement is currently being issued to class members.
Here are some important dates to know:
- You must file a claim form by JANUARY 29, 2018 to receive free credit monitoring or a cash payment.
- You must file a claim for by FEBRUARY 1, 2019 to receive reimbursement for time and money you believe you
expended because of the Anthem data breach.
Claim forms and additional information about this settlement can be found at http://www.databreach-settlement.com or by calling 1-855-636-6136.
**UPDATE** JUNE 2017
Plaintiffs’ Counsel Announce $115 Million Proposed Class Action Settlement in Anthem Data Breach Litigation
A proposed settlement has been reached in a class action lawsuit over the 2015 cyberattack of health insurer Anthem, Inc., involving the theft of the personal information of 78.8 million people. The $115 million settlement, if approved by the Court, will be the largest data breach settlement in history.
The proposed settlement provides for Anthem to establish a $115 million settlement fund, which will be used to 1) provide victims of the data breach at least two years of credit monitoring; 2) cover out-of-pocket expenses incurred by consumers as a result of the data breach; and 3) provide cash compensation for those consumers who are already enrolled in credit monitoring. In addition to the monetary fund, the settlement will require Anthem to guarantee a certain level of funding for information security and to implement or maintain numerous specific changes to its data security systems, including encryption of certain information and archiving sensitive data with strict access controls. The settlement is designed to protect class members from future risk, provide compensation, and ensure best cybersecurity practices to deter against future data breaches.
In early 2015, Anthem acknowledged that it had been the target of a cyber-attack, in which the personal information of 78.8 million individuals was stolen, including, for many of those individuals: names, dates of birth, social security numbers, and health care ID numbers.
A motion for preliminary approval of the settlement was filed June 23, 2017 by the Plaintiffs. The Court is scheduled to hear Plaintiffs’ motion on August 17, 2017. If granted, the class members will be notified about the details of the settlement, and invited to participate in and comment on the settlement. For additional updates and information about the lawsuit and settlement, please contact us at 317-636-6481.
Anthem Lawsuits Consolidated and Transferred to California Court
On June 8, 2015, the Judicial Panel for Multidistrict Litigation ordered the consolidation of class action lawsuits filed against Anthem Inc., after the company suffered a massive computer data breach that allowed computer hackers access to personal information of more than 80 million customers. The Honorable Lucy H. Koh was selected to preside over the lawsuits in the Northern District of California. While Anthem Inc., has its headquarters in Indianapolis, Indiana, the company also has several offices located in the state of California where many of the plaintiffs in this litigation also live.
Multidistrict litigation, or consolidation of lawsuits, allows for a more efficient court process including more consistent pretrial rulings as well as a reduction of duplicate work since resources are pooled.
Consumers, Lawmakers, and Computer Security Experts Question Impact of Anthem Data Breach
Numerous discussions have taken place in the media and on social media blogs regarding the importance of protecting personal data after news of the massive data breach at health insurer Anthem was announced in early February 2015. It is estimated that 80 million current and former customers of Anthem – including children — are at risk for identity theft after hackers accessed records containing personal information.
Lawsuits have been filed on behalf of consumers across the United States who provided their personal information to Anthem for insurance purposes and now could suffer significant financial loss due to the theft of this information. The health insurer has admitted that it did not encrypt this personal data and stored at least 10 years-worth of customer information in its database that hackers accessed.
Worried consumers have placed freezes on their credit files with Experian, Trans Union, and Equifax—the three credit bureau agencies that report consumer credit for financial transactions. While Anthem has offered 24 months of free credit monitoring, many consumers and experts say the data breach will have a lifetime effect as consumers have no way of deactivating their social security numbers and birthdates — two key pieces of information necessary to conduct financial transactions.
Reports of tax-related identity theft
Some Anthem customers have learned their personal information was used to file fraudulent tax returns and that thieves have pocketed the refunds. In some cases consumers who have not filed their tax returns discovered a fraudulent tax return was filed on their behalf when they received tax refund checks or debit cards in their home mailboxes. Others have attempted to file their returns only to be told by the IRS or State Department of Revenue that a tax return had already been filed. Victims of tax fraud are then burdened with the process of filing the correct return and waiting for their tax refund which can take several months.
Experts say the best way to protect against tax-related identity theft is to file tax returns as early as possible. This will block any fraudulent filings from occurring.
The next step for Anthem customers
Several class action lawsuits have been filed to protect Anthem customers whose information was stolen in the recent data breach. Cohen & Malad, LLP filed a lawsuit against Anthem on behalf of all 80 million customers and has asked that the court consolidate all of the lawsuits to Indianapolis where Anthem has its headquarters. Anthem has also asked to court to consolidate the lawsuits to Indianapolis. Cohen & Malad, LLP will continue to update this website as the lawsuit progresses.