The email account was accessed on May 8, 2018 but the security breach was not noticed until May 17. Upon finding the breach, the email account was secured to stop further unauthorized access and a major cybersecurity forensics firm was hired to complete an investigation into the breach and help with the breach response.
MedSpring found out on May 22, 2018 that the attacker possibly accessed to the protected health information of patients through the emails and email attachments. The breach was restricted to a single email account and no other systems were impacted.
A full audit of all messages in the account was completed to determine which patients had been impacted and the types of information that had been affected. MedSpring says the breach was kept to patients who had previously attended its urgent care clinics in Illinois.
The email account contained information such as names, medical record numbers, account numbers, dates of services, and other data in relation to the medical services provided to patients. The investigation did not find any proof to suggest that emails in the account were viewed and MedSpring has not been informed of any cases of misuse of patient information so far.
All patients potentially impacted by the phishing attack have now been alerted by mail and one year of complimentary credit monitoring, identity protection and fraud resolution services have been provided through Experian.
As is necessary under HIPAA Rules, the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights has been made aware of the breach. The breach report states that 13,034 patients have been impacted.