Lawmakers Compromised In Mass Data Breach

Photo by Florian Olivo on Unsplash

A breach of the health insurance marketplace for Washington, D.C., on Tuesday (March 7) has likely exposed the personal information of hundreds of lawmakers and staff, according to a top White House official.

On Wednesday (March 8), Chief Administrative Officer Catherine L. Szpindor explained in a letter that the U.S. Capitol police and FBI had informed her of the breach at DC Health Link.

DC Health Link is the Affordable Care Act organization responsible for administering health care plans for residents of the District of Columbia, including members of Congress and staff on Capitol Hill.

In the letter, Szpindor reveals that she doesn’t know the precise scope of the data breach but was expecting to have access to a list of “impacted enrollees later today.”

She notes that those affected had their account information and personal identifying information breached.

Szpindor also shared that it didn’t appear as though House lawmakers were the target of the attack.

However, Szpindor advises that House lawmakers may want to freeze family credit at the three major credit unions — Experian, Equifax, and Transunion — “out of an abundance of caution.”

The data breach may have also affected Senate offices.

In an email sent to Senate offices on Wednesday, the offices are informed that the Senate Sergeant at Arms was alerted about the breach by law enforcement.

The notice explains that the data accessed includes the full names, enrolment date, relationship (self, spouse, child), and email address “but no other Personal Identifiable Information.”

Also on Wednesday, DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority, which operates DC Health Link, revealed the company launched an investigation into the breach.