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Tactics Behind CareFirst Hack

By Vigilize | Thursday, May 28, 2015 - One Comment

An article review.


Taking a turn at the breach steering wheel


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In May 2014, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield learned that one of their information systems had been infected with malware, so they got rid of it. Or so they thought. The malware was never fully eradicated, leading to a substantial hacking incident a few weeks later.

CareFirst is not the only health insurer to be breached, as companies like Anthem and Premera have also recently announced breach news of their own. One common component of these attacks was the unique attack vectors used by the hackers.

The hackers used fake domains to disguise their malicious links as official looking correspondence. If they could get just one employee to click on the link, the malware code would execute and get into the network. Likewise, the hackers would register very similar domain names to actual business domains of insurance plan names. Some of these were barely detectable at a quick glance, as the changes were deliberately subtle.

As a result of the breach, CareFirst has stepped up and offered two years of identity protection to the affected victims. This is unusual compared to the one year of protection that many companies offer. In some cases, the hackers are smart enough to not sell or use the stolen identities for one year. This leaves victims vulnerable well beyond the single year of ID protection.

We all know there is no such thing as complete security. Breaches can happen and do happen every day, so what are you doing to mitigate your risk? Helping you manage your IT risk is our specialty! infotex staffs a Network Operations Center with skilled data analysts that monitor customized Intrusion Detection Systems running on our client’s networks. Our data security analysts watch these systems in real time, and react to emergency events 24x7x365.

If you’d like to learn more about how to handle a data breach within a bank setting, consider attending Dan Hadaway’s workshop, Building Your Incident Response Program, on Thursday, June 4th. This seminar will be held at the IBA Center for Professional Development, 6925 Parkdale Place, Indianapolis, IN 46254. We’d love to see you there!


Click Here To Read the Full Article


The above is what we call an “Article Review.” It is part of our attempt to help our readers find excellent reading materials to back up important technology risk management concepts. We try not to include articles that are merely news or additional news about mainstream issues. Instead, we try to highlight articles that our “typical clients” should be sure to read, or that are about concepts “outside the mainstream media.” infotex does not intend to endorse views represented by the writers of the articles we review, nor do we try to keep our Clients aware of EVERYTHING. For example, if a particular story concept is being reported upon in many different media sources, infotex usually chooses to ignore the story concept altogether, unless we can find a “unique take” on the story concept.


Original article by Joseph Goeder of Insurance Networking News.


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One Response to “Tactics Behind CareFirst Hack”

Comment from k
Time 05/29/2015 at 10:37 am

So many lessons to learn here!

I read my new email in plain text first, but would I recognize a link to a site that closely emulated a legitimate site? I hope so! Some links are quite lengthy though. And Bitly, well there’s a whole other issue.

I’m going to talk radical here yet it is nothing new really, email should only be opened on a computer that nothing else happens on, and that is logged in with a user that can do little to nothing. Totally off network might be best.

Dan, you got me going with this one.
Then the issued of shared computers. The sins of Tuesday’s user could be visited upon the innocent user on Friday or even the Admin user logging in for maintenance a week later. k

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