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Fla. Hospital Admits Patient, Employee Data Was Hacked

Broward Health, a large public health system in Florida, has indicated that a data breach on Oct. 15 resulted in compromised patient and employee data. Broward Health hasn't revealed many details about the breach.

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(TNS) — Broward Health hospital announced Saturday that it was hit by a data breach this fall that exposed personal and medical data of some of its patients and employees, but just how many were affected was not made public.

Information accessed in the breach included names, birth dates, Social Security numbers, driver’s license numbers, bank information, addresses, phone numbers, insurance information and medical information, such as diagnosis and treatment, according to a statement released by the hospital.

Broward Health said the breach occurred on Oct. 15, 2021, when “an intruder gained entry to the Broward Health network through the office of a third-party medical provider permitted to access the system to provide healthcare services.”

It wasn’t until four days later, on Oct. 19, that the hospital discovered the breach and notified the FBI and Department of Justice.

“The DOJ requested that Broward Health briefly delay notification of affected individuals to ensure that the notification does not compromise the ongoing law enforcement investigation,” according to the statement.

The hospital said it also hired a cybersecurity firm to investigate and a data reviews specialist to examine the extent of the breach, and the latter determined “some patient and employee personal information may have been impacted.”

No further information was provided on the breadth of the impact.

The hospital said only that there was “no evidence any of the obtained information has been misused.” It did not elaborate on how these determinations were made.

Broward Health said it is offering those affected access to a free, two-year monitoring system. Additional information is available by calling 855-862-8553 between 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or between 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. ET Saturday and Sunday, though calls to the hotline went unanswered Saturday.

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