Wisconsin Institute of Urology Announces Data Security Event
Wisconsin Institute of Urology (“WIU”) recently discovered that certain personal information on its systems was subject to unauthorized access [that an employee email account was accessed by an unauthorized individual]. While we are unaware of any fraudulent misuse of data related to this incident, we are providing information about the event, our response, and steps that may be taken to better protect against the possibility of identity theft and fraud, should you feel it is necessary to do so.
On or about May 26, 2021, WIU discovered suspicious activity related to an employee’s email account. Upon discovery, WIU immediately changed the impacted employee’s password and launched an investigation into the nature and scope of the incident. On or about June 1, 2021, WIU confirmed that the employee’s email account was accessed by an unauthorized individual. WIU then promptly undertook a thorough and time intensive review of the data to determine the individuals whose information was at risk, and then worked quickly to identify accurate address information to provide this written notification to all potentially impacted individuals.
What Information is Involved?
The impacted email account included emails and attachments containing certain protected health information, including: name, date of birth, medical treatment and/or medical diagnosis information, and health insurance information. Any individuals whose Social Security numbers may have been impacted are receiving written correspondence via US Mail. Again, we are unaware of any fraudulent misuse of data related to this incident.
What We Are Doing.
We take these matters extremely seriously. When we were alerted of the issue, we immediately took steps, including working with third-party forensic specialists, to determine the nature and scope of the incident. We also confirmed the security of our network, and that there has been no access to any other email accounts or to any aspects of our computer systems. Additionally, while we go to great lengths to protect personal information entrusted to us, including use of secure electronic medical records management systems, as part of our ongoing commitment to the security of information in our care, we are further evaluating our data security policies and procedures relating to email usage. We are notifying regulatory authorities where necessary.
What You Can Do.
We are providing notice of this event so that you may take further steps to protect your information should you feel it is appropriate to do so. We encourage you to review the information in the “Steps You Can Take to Protect Information” included at the end of this notice.
For More Information.
WIU wants to assure you that we take the responsibility to safeguard personal information very seriously. We deeply regret any inconvenience or concern this situation may have caused you. If you have any additional questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to call [call center info].
STEPS YOU CAN TAKE TO PROTECT PERSONAL INFORMATION
Monitor Your Accounts
Under U.S. law, a consumer is entitled to one free credit report annually from each of the three major credit reporting bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. To order your free credit report, visit www.annualcreditreport.com or call, toll-free, 1-877-322-8228. You may also directly contact the three major credit reporting bureaus listed below to request a free copy of your credit report.
Consumers have the right to place an initial or extended “fraud alert” on a credit file at no cost. An initial fraud alert is a 1-year alert that is placed on a consumer’s credit file. Upon seeing a fraud alert display on a consumer’s credit file, a business is required to take steps to verify the consumer’s identity before extending new credit. If you are a victim of identity theft, you are entitled to an extended fraud alert, which is a fraud alert lasting seven years. Should you wish to place a fraud alert, please contact any one of the three major credit reporting bureaus listed below.
As an alternative to a fraud alert, consumers have the right to place a “credit freeze” on a credit report, which will prohibit a credit bureau from releasing information in the credit report without the consumer’s express authorization. The credit freeze is designed to prevent credit, loans, and services from being approved in your name without your consent. However, you should be aware that using a credit freeze to take control over who gets access to the personal and financial information in your credit report may delay, interfere with, or prohibit the timely approval of any subsequent request or application you make regarding a new loan, credit, mortgage, or any other account involving the extension of credit. Pursuant to federal law, you cannot be charged to place or lift a credit freeze on your credit report. To request a security freeze, you will need to provide the following information:
1. Full name (including middle initial as well as Jr., Sr., II, III, etc.); 2. Social Security number; 3. Date of birth; 4. Addresses for the prior two to five years; 5. Proof of current address, such as a current utility bill or telephone bill; 6. A legible photocopy of a government-issued identification card (state driver’s license or ID card, etc.); and 7. A copy of either the police report, investigative report, or complaint to a law enforcement agency concerning identity theft if you are a victim of identity theft.
Should you wish to place a credit freeze, please contact the three major credit reporting bureaus listed below:
|Equifax Fraud Alert, P.O. Box 105069 Atlanta, GA 30348-5069||Experian Fraud Alert, P.O. Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013||TransUnion Fraud Alert, P.O. Box 2000, Chester, PA 19016|
|Equifax Credit Freeze, P.O. Box 105788 Atlanta, GA 30348-5788||Experian Credit Freeze, P.O. Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013||TransUnion Credit Freeze, P.O. Box 160, Woodlyn, PA 19094|
You may further educate yourself regarding identity theft, fraud alerts, credit freezes, and the steps you can take to protect your personal information by contacting the consumer reporting bureaus, the Federal Trade Commission, or your state Attorney General. The Federal Trade Commission may be reached at: 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20580; www.identitytheft.gov; 1-877-ID-THEFT (1-877-438-4338); and TTY: 1-866-653-4261. The Federal Trade Commission also encourages those who discover that their information has been misused to file a complaint with them. You can obtain further information on how to file such a complaint by way of the contact information listed above. You have the right to file a police report if you ever experience identity theft or fraud. Please note that in order to file a report with law enforcement for identity theft, you will likely need to provide some proof that you have been a victim. Instances of known or suspected identity theft should also be reported to law enforcement and your state Attorney General. This notice has not been delayed by law enforcement.
For Maryland residents, the Maryland Attorney General may be contacted at: 200 St. Paul Place, 16th Floor, Baltimore, MD 21202; 1-410-528-8662 or 1-888-743-0023; and www.oag.state.md.us.
For New Mexico residents, you have rights pursuant to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, such as the right to be told if information in your credit file has been used against you, the right to know what is in your credit file, the right to ask for your credit score, and the right to dispute incomplete or inaccurate information. Further, pursuant to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the consumer reporting bureaus must correct or delete inaccurate, incomplete, or unverifiable information; consumer reporting agencies may not report outdated negative information; access to your file is limited; you must give your consent for credit reports to be provided to employers; you may limit “prescreened” offers of credit and insurance you get based on information in your credit report; and you may seek damages from violator. You may have additional rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act not summarized here. Identity theft victims and active duty military personnel have specific additional rights pursuant to the Fair Credit Reporting Act. We encourage you to review your rights pursuant to the Fair Credit Reporting Act by visiting www.consumerfinance.gov/f/201504_cfpb_summary_your-rights-under-fcra.pdf, or by writing Consumer Response Center, Room 130-A, Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580.
For New York residents, the New York Attorney General may be contacted at: Office of the Attorney General, The Capitol, Albany, NY 12224-0341; 1-800-771-7755; or https://ag.ny.gov/.
For North Carolina residents, the North Carolina Attorney General may be contacted at: 9001 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-9001; 1-877-566-7226 or 1-919-716-6000; and www.ncdoj.gov.
For Rhode Island residents, the Rhode Island Attorney General may be reached at: 150 South Main Street, Providence, RI 02903; www.riag.ri.gov; and 1-401-274-4400. Under Rhode Island law, you have the right to obtain any police report filed in regard to this incident.