Fake email from CEO leads to major data breach at health-care company

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: hackers are sneaky. One of their favorite tricks is email that looks like it came from a legitimate source. The email will ask you to click a link, download an attachment or provide information you shouldn’t.

We’ve told you in the past how to spot and avoid these types of emails. However, sometimes a hacker manages to send the right fake email to the right person, and they get everything they want. That’s what just happened to one health-care provider.


The provider is Magnolia Health Corporation in Tulare, California. It operates five rehabilitation and nursing-home facilities, but it wasn’t patient data that was stolen this time. Instead, the unknown hacker got every scrap of information on MHC’s employees.

It started with a hacker gaining access to CEO Kensett Moyle’s email account. We don’t have the details on how, but it was likely through a targeted phishing scam or he reused a password from a compromised account. It even could have been an inside job.

Once the hacker had control of the account, he or she sent an email to another employee in the company requesting an Excel spreadsheet containing employee information. That information included “Names, Social Security Numbers, employee numbers, home addresses, birth dates, hire dates, seniority dates, salaries, job titles and departments, last date paid and place of employment (facility name).”

The employee, naturally, sent the information without question. That happened on February 3, and the company didn’t even realize what had happened until February 10. MHC then sent a letter to employees acknowledging the hack and offering one year of free ID theft protection.

This is a good reminder of a few things. The first is that anyone can fall for a phishing email if it comes from the right source or says the right thing. The second is that it takes just one mistake for your information to end up in the hands of hackers; and it doesn’t even have to be your mistake.

That’s why you shouldn’t wait any longer to sign up for identity theft protection with our sponsor LifeLock. LifeLock monitors your credit report, bank accounts, online databases and more for misuses of your information.

If LifeLock spots suspicious activity, it alerts you so you can take action. Even better, it assigns you a U.S.-based Identity Restoration Specialist who can help you contact the right companies and fill out the right forms. LifeLock will also spend up to $1 million to hire lawyers, accountants and other specialists to help you get your identity back.

Don’t wait; get started with LifeLock today. Call 800-417-3841 or enroll here with promo code “KIM” and get an additional 10% off any order.

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Komando Staff. We aim to highlight products and services you might find interesting, or useful. This post includes products and services from our trusted sponsor, LifeLock.
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