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Data Breach Leads to Record Settlement by Anthem

Anthem, the largest private insurance company in the United States, has agreed to pay $115 million to settle a class action lawsuit, the consolidation of more than 100 lawsuits filed against it, believed to be the largest settlement ever for a data breach case of this type.

In 2015, hackers gained access to Anthem’s computer system and released the personal data of approximately 80 million people. Names, birthdays, Social Security numbers, email addresses, and employment and income information were released, but credit card or medical information were not. Anthem reported the breach to the FBI when it occurred.

The settlement will give approximately $50 to each person whose data was compromised — enough to cover the cost of two years of credit monitoring for each victim, although the victim may choose to receive a cash payment. When it initially discovered the cyberattack, Anthem offered two years of credit monitoring and identity protection to those affected. This payment would cover an additional two years of such protection, subject to an approval hearing on Aug. 17.