PORTLAND, Ore., Jan. 14, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- ID Experts, which simplifies the complex world of privacy incident response, today publicly launched FraudStop MIDAS Edition, the first post-incident monitoring service that provides protection for victims' medical identities, not just their financial accounts. FraudStop MIDAS Edition will also now be offered as an alternative to credit monitoring in cyber and privacy loss protection insurance policies offered by BCS Insurance.
Medical identity theft and fraud are uniquely damaging crimes. When someone pretends to be you to receive healthcare, your lifetime medical records become contaminated with incorrect information. In the future, that could lead to a misdiagnosis based on a condition you don't have, a prescription mistake with a medication to which you're allergic, and other dangerous or inappropriate medical treatment.
Credit monitoring services, which are offered after almost any kind of data breach, do little to help the victims of medical identity theft. Worse, they may give victims a false assurance that lowers their guard against real threats. FraudStop MIDAS Edition goes beyond financial accounts to provide visibility into a consumer's actual health care transactions and medical identity.
"In the event of a healthcare data breach, credit monitoring services are a placebo – FraudStop MIDAS Edition is actual medicine," said Bob Gregg, CEO of ID Experts. "The industry has known for years that we wanted to do more. FraudStop MIDAS Edition finally makes that possible, with a solution that goes beyond your financial accounts to protect your total medical identity."
"Individuals involved in a health plan data breach are rarely at risk of a credit issue," said Chad Chaffin assistant vice president, professional liability underwriting at BCS Insurance, a subsidiary of BCS Financial. "The risks of a stolen medical identity go well beyond that. People who commit fraud are willing to pay up to 10 times more for a medical file over other personal information to create false claims. This type of activity can alter a patient's records, leading to unexpected complications and mistakes."
Healthcare data breaches have now affected almost 40 million individuals, according to statistics collected by the Department of Health and Human Services. The breaches have ranged from improperly disposed paperwork to sophisticated hackers stealing whole medical records and offering them for sale on the "dark" Internet.
"Offering credit monitoring to victims of a Protected Health Information data breach is ineffective and disingenuous, as it only monitors financial credit, and therefore can't detect further abuse of a victim's medical identity," said Meredith Phillips, chief privacy & information security officer at Henry Ford Health System.
For consumers, FraudStop MIDAS Edition works just like ID Experts' current MIDAS service. Individuals with the protection service will receive text or email alerts any time a new claim is made against their medical identities. Members can review the claims information – presented in clear, easy-to-understand language – and approve the claim or flag it if they don't recognize it. If fraud has occurred, ID Experts will resolve the issue and work to return the member to pre-theft status.
For payers, once a data breach has occurred FraudStop MIDAS Edition offers a "quick start" option to quickly protect customers. As part of ID Experts' complete data breach services, payers can offer potentially affected individuals the chance to enroll in MIDAS – either in addition to or as a replacement for traditional credit monitoring. ID Experts will enroll those members and begin securely providing their claims information for review in a simple easy to understand format.
"When medical records are lost, traditional credit monitoring is like treating a heart attack victim with a band aid," said Christine Arevalo, vice president, Healthcare Fraud Solutions. "Fraudsters are out there buying hacked data to file fraudulent claims and FraudStop MIDAS Edition is the first offering that can truly protect identity theft victims from these attacks."
ID Experts and the original MIDAS offering received the "Cool Vendor for Healthcare Payers" award in 2014 from Gartner, Inc. Jeff Cribbs, Gartner principle research analyst and author of the report, praised MIDAS by saying it, "represents a low-cost, high-consumer-engagement tool that can not only help foster good relationships with members, but also save money by stopping payments for claims and services that are not valid."
About ID Experts
ID Experts provides software and services for managing the disclosure and breaches of regulated data. The Medical Identity Alert System – MIDAS – is the first and only member-focused healthcare fraud solution that engages health plan members to monitor their healthcare transactions and take control of their medical identities. ID Experts is an advocate for privacy and a leading contributor to legislation and industry organizations that focus on the protection of PHI and PII. On the web: http://www.idexpertscorp.com/midas-software.
SOURCE ID Experts