500,000 Impacted by Email Breach at Illinois Healthcare Firm | #emailsecurity | #phishing | #ransomware


Christie Business Holdings Company (Christie Clinic), a major medical practice in Illinois, is informing roughly 500,000 individuals that their personal information was potentially compromised in a data breach.

Christie Clinic said the data breach occurred last year, when a third party gained unauthorized access to a single business email account, likely in an attempt to intercept financial transactions.

According to the healthcare services provider, the threat actor had access to the compromised email account between July 14 and August 19, 2021, but did not compromise other systems, electronic medical records, or the firm’s patient portal.

“The investigation indicated that the purpose of the unauthorized access was to intercept a business transaction between Christie Clinic and a third party vendor. This investigation was unable to determine to what extent email messages in the account were actually viewed or accessed by an unauthorized actor,” the company said in a data breach notice on its website.

[ READ: 500,000 Patients Hit by Breaches at Healthcare Firms in Alabama, Colorado ]

The healthcare services provider also noted that it hasn’t determined the full scope of the compromise yet, but that it decided to inform all individuals whose information was likely impacted.

Christie Clinic said the hacked email account may have contained names, addresses, medical and health insurance information, and Social Security numbers.

In addition to launching an investigation into the incident and informing law enforcement, the company said it took steps to implement additional security measures, including network security solutions and data security and privacy training.

DataBreaches.net noticed that the healthcare firm informed the US Department of Health and Human Services last month that the data breach might have impacted just over 500,000 individuals.

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Ionut Arghire is an international correspondent for SecurityWeek.

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