Interior Health seeking former employees after police discover large data breach

Click to play video: 'Police investigate Interior Health data breach'
Police investigate Interior Health data breach
Interior Health is dealing with a large data breach from several years ago which affects tens of thousands of former employees, and even several thousand current ones. As Victoria Femia reports one local cybersecurity company says avoiding threats like this one - is like a game of cat and mouse. – Mar 8, 2024

Did you work for Interior Health between 2003 and 2009?

If so, the health agency is looking to get in touch.

On Thursday, IHA said it’s trying to contact former employees after a large data breach was discovered by police.

“In January, the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP informed IH about a document discovered during an investigation that contained personal information of individuals, including current and former employees of IH,” said the health agency.

“The information seized by police included names, dates of birth, social insurance numbers, home addresses, phone numbers, and the individuals’ age in 2009. The document provided to IH has more than 20,000 names on it.”

Click to play video: 'Is your personal information at risk after staggering data leak?'
Is your personal information at risk after staggering data leak?

Interior Health said no patient information was included in the document retrieved by RCMP.

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“IH has confirmed there are approximately 7,000 current employees listed and are taking steps to notify them,” said Interior Health.

“Due to the age of the data and its broad scope, IH is not able to accurately confirm the former employee information, nor where the information came from.”

Anyone who was employed by Interior Health between 2003 and 2009 is encouraged to call 1-833-705-2569, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday to Friday, to determine if their information is in the document recovered by police.

More information is also available on Interior Health’s website.

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“Interior Health’s top priority is to ensure that personal information is always protected,” said Brent Kruschel of Interior Health.

“We are reaching out to employees who worked for us during these years to ensure that if their information is involved, that they receive support, including credit monitoring if they are part of this investigation.”

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Interior Health noted that it hired external security experts to review the data, and they confirmed that the information is not on the dark web.

Vernon RCMP say no arrests or charges have been made.

“No arrests or charges have been made in relation to this information,” states Const. Chris Terleski, Media Relations Officer for the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP.

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“As part of the continuing investigation, we are releasing this information so potentially impacted individuals can take the necessary steps to safeguard themselves.

“It is a timely reminder that identity fraud continues to be a persistent threat in our community and brings to light the importance of taking proactive steps to safeguard yourself.

“You can significantly reduce your risk by educating yourself and staying informed about common fraud schemes and tactics, regularly monitoring your credit, and routinely reviewing financial accounts for any unusual activity.”


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