Change Healthcare Cyberattack Is ‘Wake-Up Call’ for Vulnerable Industry

Change Healthcare is the target of an ongoing cyberattack that is causing significant disruption for providers and pharmacists that rely on the UnitedHealth Group subsidiary to process claims, payments and authorizations.

While two prominent credit-rating firms say the incident likely won’t affect the credit worthiness or earnings outlook of UnitedHealth’s overall enterprise, one industry expert says the Change cyberattack does still pose risks for the company — and puts similarly diversified health insurers on notice.

“There’s just no guarantee that anybody’s going to be entirely safe from cyberattacks,” says Dean Ungar, a vice president and senior analyst at Moody’s Investors Service. “I think this does serve as a wake-up call or reminder to everyone in the industry…Even those [firms] that weren’t hit probably took this opportunity to take another look at what they’re doing and make sure that they’re protected — to the extent that you can be.”

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Leslie Small

Leslie Small

Leslie has been reporting and editing in various journalism roles for nearly a decade. Most recently, she was the senior editor of FierceHealthPayer, an e-newsletter covering the health insurance industry. A graduate of Penn State University, she previously served in editing roles at newspapers in Pennsylvania, Virginia and Colorado.

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