Fraud

Two computers stolen from Arkansas Blue Cross

July 21st, 2015

Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield members sent out potential data breach notification letters after its computers were stolen. Computers belonged to Treat Insurance Agency, which solicits applications from individuals for insurance coverage through multiple insurers which includes Arkansas Blue Cross.  ABCBS did not reveal the details of information present on the computers.

“Treat Insurance Agency very much regrets that theft from their offices has affected Arkansas Blue Cross members and applicants,” Arkansas Blue Cross Senior Vice President Ron DeBerry said in a statement.

“To reduce the risks that any similar thefts might affect our valuable customers, we will request independent insurance agents to protect their computer records by using encryption

technology on all computers storing any applications for Arkansas Blue Cross.”

The computers contained sensitive information of 560 Arkansas Blue Cross applicants. According to the reports, affected individuals by this incident will receive one year of complimentary identity protection services. The details of the theft are not known.

“The notification required by this section shall be made after the law enforcement agency determines that it will not compromise the investigation,” the legislation states. “Notification under this section is not required if after a reasonable investigation the person or business determines that there is no reasonable likelihood of harm to customers.”

As the device is stolen, ABCBS explained that there is no way to determine if an unauthorized person attempted to access the patient information. Also, it did not specify if the stolen computers were encrypted.

Alertsec strengthens security

Alertsec has created a web based encryption service that radically simplifies deployment and management of PC encryption by using industry leading Check Point Full Disk Encryption (former Pointsec) software.

Organizations, especially corporate giants, have to have an information security policy in place that proves they have taken the necessary steps and measures to safeguard the information they gathered. If these policies are not adhered to, the regulators may prosecute.

Alertsec Xpress is used by organizations that have recognized the need to protect their information. Customers range from single-user sole traders and consultants to multinational companies with a large number of offices around the globe. Over 4 million users worldwide use Alertsec Xpress’s Check Point Full Disk Encryption.

 

Data breach may affect 200,000 individuals

December 17th, 2014

Belle Glade office of Family Central, Inc. in Florida suffered data breach when former employee accessed the electronic database inappropriately. The said database manages the personal information of individuals applying for or receiving services from the coalition.

“The security breach compromised the personal information of individuals whose data is contained in the system, including parents and children residing in Palm Beach County who have received school readiness services or participated in the Voluntary Prekindergarten Education Program,” the statement read.

According to the reports, federal officials are investigating the incident. Individuals who have received services from the organization are encouraged to carefully monitor their credit history and enroll for free fraud alerts with one of the three major credit agencies.

“Family Central has implemented additional security measures including expanded security training for all employees, further restricting access to the information system and revising data security policies,” the statement said.

Currently, 177 individuals are affected but the number can grow.

According to the statement published on company’s website –

Individuals who have received services from the coalition and Family Central, Inc., may wish to review their credit history for any potential fraudulent or suspicious activities they have not authorized.  To protect themselves from the possibility of identity theft, they may also place a free fraud alert on their credit files.  A fraud alert notifies creditors to contact individuals before opening new accounts in their name.  

Get your personal as well as office laptops encrypted by Alertsec

Unencrypted laptops present a major risk of data loss. 80% of information theft is due to lost or stolen laptops and other equipment. About 50% of network intrusions are performed with credentials gathered from lost or stolen devices. The penalties for a data breach are severe not only in terms of the monetary fines imposed on the organization, but also the potential loss of trust from customers and suppliers. Encryption software greatly enhances the security of your organization’s data as the information is not compromised if a laptop is lost or stolen.

Alertsec Xpress is the full disk encryption service that delivers a mobile data protection system for all information stored on laptops used throughout your organization.

16 million affected by Data Breach last year

October 14th, 2013

Around 16 million people were affected by data breach incidents last year and more than a quarter of them went on to suffer from identity theft, according to new research.

The worst hit were those who lost payment card and Social Security number data and suffered the highest rates of fraud in the retail, financial and healthcare sectors.

In America, 4.4 million people were notified that their payment card information had been compromised in a data breach, and subsequently suffered fraud on their existing credit or debit cards. In addition, 1.26 million Americans were notified that their Social Security numbers were compromised in a data breach and became victims of identity fraud.

Recent massive data breaches like the one at Adobe, in which as many as 3 million encrypted credit card details maybe have been compromised, have highlighted just how much data can be stolen in one go.

As many as 270,000 Americans who were notified that their online banking credentials had been compromised in a data breach last year also went on to suffer fraud on their financial accounts.

A further 324,000 subsequently became victims of fraud against their checking, savings or current accounts.

Al Pascual, senior analyst of security, risk and fraud at Javelin Strategy and Research said “By breaching the data stores of businesses in the financial, healthcare and retail industries, criminals can obtain the fuel they need to execute various fraud schemes, and these crimes have crippling consequences”.

Opportunities to identify thieves has increased than ever before because of increasing moves towards digitization of patient records in healthcare, and the rise of online banking.

“Identifying and protecting the sensitive information typically stored by these industries is essential for mitigating the risk of a data breach and, therefore, the risk of financial loss to data custodians, consumers and third-party businesses,” Pascual said.

The following steps can be taken to identity theft arising from data breaches:

  • Locate and identify sensitive data.
  • Classify sensitive data accordingly.
  • Secure data based on risk profile.
  • Develop policies to mitigate future data management issues.

For now, the hunt of identity theft continues, and as long as organizations make themselves such easy and lucrative targets, we can assume the amount of data breach incidents are only going to rise.

Get your personal as well as office laptops encrypted by Alertsec

Unencrypted laptops present a major risk of data loss. 80% of information theft is due to lost or stolen laptops and other equipment. About 50% of network intrusions are performed with credentials gathered from lost or stolen devices. The penalties for a data breach are severe not only in terms of the monetary fines imposed on the organization, but also the potential loss of trust from customers and suppliers. Encryption software greatly enhances the security of your organization’s data as the information is not compromised if a laptop is lost or stolen.

Alertsec Xpress is the full disk encryption service that delivers a mobile data protection system for all information stored on laptops used throughout your organization.

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Why identity theft is critical.

March 4th, 2013

A UK-based Fraud Prevention Service, Cifas made it apparent that the deceptive use of stolen or fictitious identity details is the biggest of all fraud threats. In a Fraud trend review revealed in 2012, it has been acknowledged that 50% of all fraud cases during the year relate to the use of completely false identities or impersonation of an innocent victim. Account takeover fraud, a kind where a fraudster get advantage of account access and commands an active running account through data theft with the help of data security details rocketed by 53% more as compared with the earlier records to 38,428 incidents. Personal information of a user are stolen with the help of computer hacking and social engineering techniques through popular websites and various other methods. Fraudulent acts, where the criminal requires identity informations accounts for about 65% of all the committed frauds in 2012. The total number of people affected by this identity fraud was up by 24% from the levels in 2011. Cifas, Head of communications Kate Beddington-Brown said, “These increases serve as a warning and a challenge to organisations and consumers equally.”

Despite the heavy investments made by various organisations in data security to ensure additional steps must be taken to validate user’s identity, the crimes relating to identity have continued rising, demonstrates that more must be done, she said. “For individuals, it is obvious that fraud relating to personal data is an immense criminal trade so, fundamentally, we all have to do all we can to ensure that we also protect ourselves from becoming a victim, as well as demanding that the organisations we deal with take their security responsibilities seriously,” said Beddington-Brown.

Cifas chief executive Peter Hurst said fraud prevention remains better than cure. He also said, “It is time for all organisations and consumers to start reviewing their approaches to preventing fraud rather than just dealing with its effects.” “Investment in proper fraud prevention systems and approaches, from online security to data sharing, and education are the cornerstones of such an approach. Without them, the only thing that is guaranteed is an ever increasing fraud losses to organisations and society at large, he said.

Hackers! Beware of Alertsec

By using industry leading Check Point Full Disk Encryption (former Pointsec) software, Alertsec has created a web based encryption service that radically simplifies deployment and management of PC encryption.

Alertsec’s mission is to continuously improve our products and services in order to deliver the easiest and most cost-effective managed encryption service on the marketThe only way to protect information stored on a PC or laptop is by using encryption. Alertsec Xpress offers full disk encryption and is therefore superior to other encryption methods when comparing security, performance, robustness and ease-of-use for both administrators and users.

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