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Nebraska Attorney General’s Office Issues Consumer Alert Regarding Change Healthcare Data Breach

The Nebraska Attorney General’s Office is issuing a Consumer Alert regarding a data breach involving Change Healthcare, a subsidiary of United Health Group (“UHG”), warning consumers to take action to prevent potential identity theft.

Change Healthcare has not yet notified Nebraska consumers about the data breach. The Nebraska Attorney General’s Office is concerned that a delay in notifying consumers will impact consumers’ ability to be proactive and protect themselves from further harm. The following information is provided to help consumers take proactive steps to protect their data. 

What Happened:

In February, a hacker accessed Change Healthcare’s systems. The hacker used compromised credentials and launched a ransomware attack, encrypting insurance processing systems across Nebraska and much of the country. It is likely that many Nebraskans’ data was compromised, including protected health information (PHI) and personally identifiable information (PII), both of which can include identifiers such as names, phone numbers, email addresses, Social Security numbers, medical record numbers, and payment information. 

What You Can Do:

If you have been affected or suspect that you have been affected, there are steps you can take to protect yourself:

  • Contact your credit or debit card company and request a replacement card for any payment methods you have used in hospitals and other medical institutions.
  • Review your banking and card statements and report any suspicious activity to the relevant financial institutions.
  • Request a credit freeze from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. When your credit is frozen, new lines of credit may not be opened in your name without you temporarily lifting the freeze. All consumers, regardless of impact, should consider freezing their credit to prevent credit fraud. A freeze should not stop you from using your existing credit cards or other accounts, but it may slow down opening new credit lines. 

If you are freezing your credit, you will need to contact all three major credit reporting agencies: 

You can request a free credit report on a weekly basis from www.annualcreditreport.com or by calling toll-free 877-322-8228. It is important to review the reports carefully. Look for accounts you did not open, inquiries from creditors that you did not initiate, and confirm that your personal information, such as your home address and Social Security number, is accurate. 

If you see anything you do not understand or recognize, call the credit reporting agency at the telephone number on the report. You should file an identity theft affidavit online at www.identitytheft.gov. Keep a copy of the affidavit because you may need to give copies to creditors to clear up your records or to access transaction records.

Our office is dedicated to protecting Nebraska’s consumers and our healthcare providers. A consumer guide dedicated to preventing Identity Theft is available on the Nebraska Attorney General’s website, ProtectTheGoodLife.Nebraska.gov.

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