What You Should Know About the Anthem Cyber-Attack

Key Facts

Anthem Inc., a Blue Cross and Blue Shield company operating in 14 states, was the target of a cyber-attack that impacts 78.9 million of its customers and employees.  Those impacted by the cyber-attack include current and former Blue Cross and Blue Shield members dating back to 2004.

Anthem’s investigation indicates that the information accessed included name, date of birth, member ID, street and email addresses, and employment information.  A small number of Social Security Numbers were also part of the data that was accessed. 

No medical or financial data (including credit card data) was obtained in the cyber-attack.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska is a separate company from Anthem, and our systems were not impacted by this attack.  The majority of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska’s members are not impacted by the cyber-attack against Anthem.  

However, if a Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska member received medical care in a state that is part of Anthem’s service area during the last 10 years, their information may have been retained in Anthem’s database and therefore might have been compromised in the cyber-attack. 

As of this date, we have determined that 52,691 current or former Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska members were impacted by the Anthem cyber-attack.  Of those individuals, 11,245 live in Nebraska and 41,446 work for a Nebraska-based company but live in a state other than Nebraska.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska is committed to doing everything we can to protect our members’ privacy against the threat of cyber-attacks.  Strong privacy and data protection have always been top priorities for us, and they will certainly continue to be. We have multiple layers of data security in place and actively monitor our systems on a regular basis.

Resources and Help for Impacted Members

Anthem is offering free credit monitoring and identity protection services to all impacted individuals.  Additional information about these free services may be found at www.anthemfacts.com or by calling 877-263-7995.  Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska members may also call our Member Services Department at 855-766-5959.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska will be sending letters to our members who were affected by Anthem’s cyber-attack this week, letting them know the resources available to them.  In addition, Anthem will be sending a notification of their own to all impacted individuals nationwide by U.S. mail in the coming weeks.

Free Identity Protection and Credit Monitoring Services for Impacted Members

The free identity protection services provided by Anthem include two years of:

Identity Theft Repair Assistance: Should a member experience fraud, an investigator will do the work to recover financial losses, restore the member’s credit, and ensure the member’s identity is returned to its proper condition. This assistance will cover any fraud that has occurred since the incident first began.

Credit Monitoring: At no cost, members may also enroll in additional protections, including credit monitoring. Credit monitoring alerts consumers when banks and creditors use their identity to open new credit accounts.

Child Identity Protection: Child-specific identity protection services will also be offered to any members with children insured through their Blue Cross and Blue Shield plan.

Identity theft insurance: For individuals who enroll, the company has arranged for $1,000,000 in identity theft insurance, where allowed by law.

Identity theft monitoring/fraud detection: For members who enroll, data such as credit card numbers, social security numbers and emails will be scanned against aggregated data sources maintained by top security researchers that contain stolen and compromised individual data, in order to look for any indication that the members’ data has been compromised.

Phone Alerts: Individuals who register for this service and provide their contact information will receive an alert when there is a notification from a credit bureau, or when it appears from identity theft monitoring activities that the individual’s identity may be compromised.

Anthem’s Service Area

  • Anthem Inc. is a Blue Cross and Blue Shield company that operates in the following 14 states:
  • California
  • Missouri (excluding 30 counties in the surrounding Kansas City area)
  • Colorado
  • Nevada
  • Connecticut
  • New Hampshire
  • Georgia
  • New York
  • Indiana
  • Ohio
  • Kentucky
  • Virginia
  • Maine
  • Wisconsin

How the Blue Cross and Blue Shield System Works

There are 37 independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that operate in different states across the U.S. and in Puerto Rico.  Together, we form the Blue Cross and Blue Shield network. We are all separate companies, but we work together to provide our members with access to medical care wherever they are.  This enables Blue Cross and Blue Shield members to receive the same benefits for medical care either at home or while living or traveling elsewhere.

If a member receives medical care in another Blue Cross and Blue Shield company’s geographic service area, their medical claim is sent from that Blue Cross and Blue Shield company to the member’s “home” Blue Cross Blue Shield company. This process ensures that the member’s claim is processed based on their personal benefit plan, while receiving the discounts agreed upon between the medical provider and the Blue Cross Blue Shield company that received it.

HEALTH INSURANCE TERMS


COINSURANCE

The percentage of the bill you pay after your deductible has been met.

COPAY

A fixed amount you pay when you get a covered health service.

Tiered benefit plan

A health care plan featuring multiple levels of benefits based on the network status of a particular provider. 

DEDUCTIBLE

The annual amount you pay for covered health services before your insurance begins to pay.

emergency care services

Any covered services received in a hospital emergency room setting.

SUBSTANCE ABUSE DISORDER SERVICES

Includes behavioral health treatment, counseling, and psychotherapy


in-network provider

A provider contracted by your insurance company to accept an agreed upon payment for covered services. 

OUT-OF-network provider

A term for providers that aren’t contracting with your insurance company. (Your out-of-pocket costs will tend to be more expensive if you go to an out-of-network provider.)

out-of-pocket

Your expenses for medical care that aren’t reimbursed by insurance, including deductibles, coinsurance and co-payments.

penalty

If you can afford health insurance, but choose not to buy it, you must have a health coverage exemption or pay a tax penalty on your federal income tax return.

premium

The amount you pay to your health insurance company each month. 


Preventive services

Health care services that focus on the prevention of disease and health maintenance.

rehab SERVICES

Services and devices to help you recover if you are injured or have surgery. This includes physical, occupational and speech therapy.

special enrollment period

The time after the Open Enrollment Period when you can still purchase health insurance only if you have a qualifying life event (losing other health coverage, having a baby, getting married, moving).

specialist

A physician who has a majority of his or her practice in fields other than internal or general medicine, obstetrics/gynecology, pediatrics or family practice.