April 19, 2011
Consumer rights attorneys at Kershaw, Cutter & Ratinoff filed suit against Health Net and IBM on April 14, 2011, after those companies revealed that they compromised the private medical information of nearly 2 million Health Net customers.
According to a letter that was sent to Health Net members, sometime before January 21, 2011, IBM, who manages Health Net's data center in Rancho Cordova, California, lost several hard disk drives containing sensitive, personal, and confidential medical and financial information about Health Net members. According to the letter, IBM informed Health Net about the security breach on January 21, 2011. Health Net, however, did not reveal the breach to its members or the public until March 14, when it sent letters describing the breach to the members whose confidential information went missing. The confidential information that cannot be located included names, addresses, health information, Social Security numbers, and/or financial information.
This is the second time in two years that Health Net has lost customer data on a grand scale. Although the company declined to disclose how many consumers may be affected, California's Department of Managed Health Care estimated the number to be 1.9 million. The company is now under investigation by both the California Department of Managed Health Care and the Insurance Commissioner.
Kershaw, Cutter & Ratinoff have brought a nationwide class action on behalf of all Health Net members' whose private information was compromised under California Civil Code section 56, which provides a $1,000 remedy for each person whose privacy was compromised.
Consumer rights lawyer J.R. Parker stated, "When private health care information is disclosed without authorization, the consequences can be disastrous, which is why sensitive health care and financial information should never be disclosed to a third party without consent. No Health Net member agreed to let their private information be lost. Fortunately, California law provides a remedy for the victims here, which we intend to pursue vigorously. By holding large insurance companies and their contractors responsible for these kinds of privacy breaches, we can prevent them from happening again in the future."
KCR Investigating GlaxoSmithKline's Breach of Consumer's Private Information
Consumer rights attorneys at Kershaw, Cutter & Ratinoff are also investigating reports about a recent data breach by GlaxoSmithKline. GlaxoSmithKline has apparently disclosed without authorization the private information of consumers who registered with Glaxo websites for pharmaceuticals and other Glaxo products.
If you received a letter informing you that you were a victim of data loss by GlaxoSmithKline, we would like to hear from you. Call 888-285-3333 or fill out the contact form on this page and one of our consumer protection attorneys will contact you shortly.