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Geisinger Health Plan notifies members of potential vendor email breach

Published October 22. 2019 11:43AM

Geisinger Health Plan has notified certain members that some protected health information may have been affected by a security incident at Magellan National Imaging Associates, a vendor hired by the health plan to manage radiology benefits. Geisinger no longer uses Magellan NIA for radiology benefits.

On July 5, Magellan discovered that the email account of one of its employees had been sending out large volumes of spam email.

An immediate investigation revealed that several unauthorized mailbox authentications and connections originating from outside the United States had been occurring on this employee’s email account since May 28. It is believed that the unknown individuals were able to obtain the employee’s email login credentials through a phishing attack or other fraudulent means.

Geisinger was alerted to the issue on Sept. 24.

Magellan believes that the intruder was attempting to access the account solely to send out the spam emails and had no intentions to retrieve or view member data.

However, Geisinger is treating this incident as a breach, because it could not be definitively determined if any emails were accessed, viewed or downloaded.

Magellan has informed Geisinger that it has taken steps to further secure all employee email accounts by disabling certain email protocols on all mailbox accounts, establishing relevant geofencing, and implementing Microsoft’s Password Hash Sync, as well as other similar measures. Magellan also determined that none of its other systems experienced any unauthorized access aside from the impacted email accounts.

Magellan provided a list of impacted members on Oct. 3, and sent letters to notify them of the potential breach on Oct. 18. The data that may have been exposed could have included their name, patient/client ID, type of service, authorization ID and diagnosis.

For more addition information, call Geisinger’s customer care team toll free at 800-686-4613, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

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