Sutter Health notified 4,500 patients of a data breach‬

16 July 2013

By Mary Zhou

In early June, letters were sent to about 4,500 patients of Sutter Health hospitals notifying them of a security breach.

Patients from Sutter Delta Medical Center, Eden Medical Center, and Alta Bates Summit Medical Center may have had their personal information leaked, possibly including names, Social Security numbers, dates of birth, genders, addresses and phone numbers.

Stephen Light, a detective at the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, said he had been contacted by about 20 people who were victims of identity theft and thought it was connected to the security breach.

Light worked on the project before transferring it to the Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team, a northern California task force that investigates tech-related crimes.

“There are approximately 5,000 victims (of the breach), so it’s pretty overwhelming to investigate with the resources we have,” Light said.

The cause for the leak is still unknown, and REACT is continuing its investigations. After the breach, Sutter Health sent out 4,500 letters on June 7 and offered patients free credit-monitoring services.

“We are concerned about this matter and take protecting our patients’ privacy very seriously,” Sutter Health said in a statement. “At this time we do not know how the information was obtained. We continue to cooperate with law enforcement to investigate this incident.”

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