Could the Blockchain Have Prevented It?


By CCN: A major data breach has rocked Quest Diagnostics, exposing the personal facts of nearly 12 million individuals in the approach. The incident, which was noted in a community filing, transpired on Could 14 following centralized 3rd-occasion billing company American Professional medical Assortment Agency (AMCA) educated the diagnostic screening company about “potential unauthorized activity” on a “web payment site.” Quest Diagnostics has some blockchain exposure, but seemingly not plenty of.

Amongst the very first providers to react was blockchain-run ID startup Civic, suggesting its decentralized technology could place an end to data breaches.

“At Civic, we’re centered on offering every person with a electronic id that they command in the hopes that incidents like this turn out to be a thing of the past.”

Civic tweet

Civic response to Quest Diagnostics data breach. | Source: Twitter

AMCA sent CCN the pursuing assertion:

“We are investigating a data incident involving an unauthorized user accessing the American Professional medical Assortment Agency system. On obtaining details from a safety compliance business that operates with credit score card providers of a attainable safety compromise, we conducted an interior critique, and then took down our website payments page…We continue being dedicated to our system’s safety, data privateness, and the safety of personal details.”

Quest Diagnostics Demands A lot more Blockchain

Engineering has created it less complicated than at any time to approach payments with the simply click of a cell product, but at what price? This was not Quest Diagnostics’ very first hack they reportedly suffered an additional data breach a few yrs in the past in which hackers gained obtain to the personal data of additional than 30,000 buyers. Had they picked out to combine Civic’s technology or an additional blockchain-based mostly system, they could have prevented this complete scenario.

The decentralized character of a distributed ledger makes it possible for data to be shared in a peer-to-peer manner, knocking out the want for a middle gentleman. Presented characteristics this sort of as transparency and immutability, the probability of a safety breach on the blockchain is considerably lowered.

Melanie Plaza, the co-founder of blockchain company Elixir, a short while ago informed Forbes:

“[These] implementations protect against details holders from shifting users’ money details, eradicating the want for a user to rely on an not known entity with their personal assets or most precious details (Equifax, cough cough).”

What Went Mistaken

Dependent on the details furnished, there were a lot of fingers in the client data pool. When the vulnerable occasion appears to have been AMCA, the billing business does organization with Quest contractor Optum360, demonstrating one thing akin to a video game of telephone with sensitive details. Now both Quest and Optum360 have enlisted the enable of forensic specialists to get to the bottom of points. The lousy actor bought ahold of the pursuing facts:

  • money data
  • Social Stability figures
  • Professional medical Data with the exception of lab benefits

AMCA has nevertheless to detect the individuals whose personal details was exposed. Quest exposed in a assertion:

“Quest has not been equipped to validate the accuracy of the details received from AMCA. Quest is getting this matter very critically and is dedicated to the privateness and safety of our patients’ personal details. Due to the fact finding out of the AMCA data safety incident, we have suspended sending assortment requests to AMCA.”

Quest would not have even essential to use AMCA in the very first location if they would go all-in on blockchain technology. They are just the most up-to-date in a string of major corporations suffering the outcomes of a safety breach. Hundreds of thousands of buyers have had their credit score card data compromised of late at providers this sort of as “TicketMaster, British Airways, and…Newegg, according to TechCrunch.

Civic’s Secure ID System

If Quest was a lover of blockchain startup Civic, this safety breach would probable never have occurred. Civic’s technology offers buyers command of their own id and the skill to decide the companies that gain obtain to it. By a combination of encrypted data and biometrics tech this sort of as fingerprinting, Civic connects users immediately to the other companies this sort of as airport safety or hotel, for occasion, in a peer-to-peer manner.

Blockchain tech could place 3rd-occasion payment vendors out of organization, but as Civic recommended, it could place hackers out of organization, far too.

*This story has been up to date to include a assertion by AMCA. 

Disclaimer: The sights expressed in the post are entirely people of the writer and do not stand for people of, nor ought to they be attributed to, CCN Marketplaces.