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Seattle Based SEIU 775 Benefits Group Suffers Security Incident

SEIU 775 Benefits Group, which is responsible for handling benefits for unionized home healthcare and nursing home workers, recently revealed that they suffered a data breach. The breach was noticed by the SEIU 775 security team on or around April 4th and is believed to have affected nearly 140,000 people. Instead of encrypting the data with ransomware, the threat actors behind the breach decided to delete it. This can still be detrimental from a business standpoint as it can make daily operations more difficult and damage the reputation of a company which could make future business less likely. Data that was deleted included names and addresses, Social Security numbers and health plan eligibility or enrollment information. Free identity and credit monitoring for one year has been offered to the individuals that were affected by the breach. All proper authorities have been notified and SEIU 775 Benefits Group is consulting with third-party security vendors on ways they can bolster their defenses going forward.

Analyst Notes

Creating protected offline backups of data and checking to make sure the backups can be restored is very important step to ensure minimize the effect of a breach. Vulnerability scans should be done, and patches should be implemented on a regular basis if they are available. Anti-virus solutions as well as end-point monitoring (EDR) such as the services offered at Binary Defense should be added when building a proactive defense plan. It is important to not only monitor security events on workstations and servers, but have a trained staff of security specialists who can interpret the events and respond 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to stop attacks in the early stages.