HIPAA Substitute Notice
Privacy Incident Involving a Vendor
Empire BlueCross BlueShield recently learned of a situation in which an employee at Connextions, a call-center vendor, confessed to Social Security Administration (SSA) investigators that she took Social Security numbers, including those from members of Empire BlueCross BlueShield. There are indications that the employee may have conveyed some of this information to third parties who are the subject of an ongoing federal criminal investigation. This individual’s employment with Connextions was terminated immediately upon Connextions becoming aware of the incident.
Empire BlueCross BlueShield has worked diligently since discovery of this matter to identify all members whose information may have been impacted by the Connextions’ employee. While the investigation is ongoing, four members have been identified as impacted to date. We notified these members to offer them free identity theft protection service. Additionally, other Empire BlueCross BlueShield members whose information could have been impacted, were also notified about the incident offering them free identity theft protection service. We believe the number of impacted members is much smaller than the number of members we are notifying. The law enforcement agencies have advised us that the list does not currently exceed 300.
An investigation into the incident is underway at various law enforcement agencies. Both Empire BlueCross BlueShield and Connextions are fully cooperating with the investigation.
We were unable to locate certain potentially affected individuals, and are providing this notice on our website to notify those individuals of this event. Should you have any questions about this notice, you may call us at 1-877-441-2645.