Health Aid Of Ohio Settles Data Breach Class Action Lawsuit

Parma-based Health Aid of Ohio has agreed to settle a class action lawsuit to resolve claims made by individuals who had their information exposed in a data breach. On February 19 , 2021, the full-service home medical equipment provider found that an unauthorized third party had gained access to its network and exfiltrated files containing sensitive customer information. A comprehensive forensic investigation was promptly launched to determine how the threat actors had accessed the network and what information had been obtained. The investigation determined that information including full names, birth dates, telephone numbers, Social Security number, medical diagnosis, insurance information, and the type of equipment provided to the individual was collected. Once the investigation had concluded, Health Aid immediately issued breach notification letters to 141,149 affected customers in May 2021. 

A class action lawsuit was then filed on behalf of affected customers against Health Aid. The plaintiffs contended that Health had failed to adequately protect sensitive customer information. The equipment provider did not implement reasonable cybersecurity measures to ensure the confidentiality of customer data. The plaintiffs alleged negligence, invasion of privacy, unjust enrichment and claim they now face an increased risk of identity theft as a result of the breach. Despite no admission of liability or wrongdoing, Health Aid agreed to settle the class action lawsuit due to ongoing legal costs and the uncertainty of trial. 

Under the terms of the settlement, the medical equipment provider will resolve claims related to the data breach. Any impacted individual whose Social Security number was compromised in the breach is eligible for a cash payout of up to $250 and may also file a claim for out-of-pocket expenditures, such as credit monitoring fees, and up to four hours of missed time at a rate of $15 per hour. Any claim must be accompanied by supporting documentation. Any person may make a claim for up to $2,500 if they can show proof that they were a victim of fraud. The filing date for claims is August 22, 2022, while the deadline for objections or exclusion is July 22, 2022.All class members are eligible for a 12-month free membership to a credit monitoring and identity theft restoration service, regardless of the categories of information compromised in the data breach. In addition, Health Aid has committed to put in place a number of additional security measures to secure client data going forward. In 2022 and 2023, the company will also go through yearly security risk assessments to see if any new security measures can be put in place.