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Catholic Charities Neighborhood Services, Inc. suffers HIPAA email breach

Catholic Charities Neighborhood Services, Inc. suffers HIPAA email breach

On September 7, 2018, Catholic Charities Neighborhood Services, Inc. submitted a  HIPAA Email Breach to the  U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Based in Far Rockaway, New York, Catholic Charities Neighborhood Services’ email breach affected  565 individuals’ protected health information. Catholic Charities Neighborhood Services is classified as a Healthcare Provider

According to  this report about CCNS’s breach:

On July 13, 2018, CCNS became aware of suspicious activity within an employee's email account.  Upon learning of this suspicious email activity, CCNS promptly launched an internal investigation, with the assistance of third-party forensic investigators.  Through this investigation, CCNS learned that an employee had received a spam phishing email and inadvertently provided his/her email credentials to an unauthorized actor. 
As a result of this phishing attack, the unauthorized actor accessed the CCNS employee email account on July 3, 2018. After conducting a comprehensive forensic investigation into the incident, on or about August 16, 2018, CCNS confirmed that the impacted email account contained, and the unauthorized actor accessed, the following types of patient information: name, date of birth, Social Security number, Medicaid ID number, diagnosis information, medications, date of admission/discharge, and/or hospital name.  CCNS does not currently have any evidence of actual or attempted misuse of the information impacted as a result of this incident.  On September 7, 2018, CCNS began mailing notification letters to the impacted patients, and is offering those affected complimentary access to credit monitoring and identity protection services.  
In addition to working with a third-party forensic investigator to conduct an investigation, CCNS is taking additional actions to strengthen the security of their email systems, as well as providing additional training to users on how to identify phishing scams. 

HHS Wall of Shame


The  HHS Wall of Shame is a website under the jurisdiction of HHS that lists all HIPAA breaches reported within the last 24 months. The Wall of Shame displays breaches that are currently under investigation by the Office for Civil Rights. As part of section 13402(e)(4) of the HITECH Act, the HHS Secretary must post a list of breaches of unsecured  protected health information affecting 500 or more individuals.


HIPAA Breach Report


The  Paubox HIPAA Breach Report analyzes breaches that affected 500 or more individuals as reported in the HHS Wall of Shame.


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