News, Jazz, NPR
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
Health News Florida

Florida Healthy Kids Website Breached

Personal information of applicants and enrollees, including Social Security numbers, dates of birth, names, addresses and financial information, could have been illegally accessed.

Hundreds of thousands of Floridians who applied for coverage or were enrolled in a children’s health insurance program between 2013 and 2020 are being encouraged to take steps to protect themselves financially after a cyberattack.

Florida Healthy Kids Corp. said in a statement Thursday evening that it was notified Dec. 9 that addresses of several thousand Florida KidCare applicants were inappropriately accessed and tampered with.

A subsequent analysis indicated there had been “significant vulnerabilities” on the website --- maintained by Jelly Bean Communications Design LLC --- since 2013.

As a result, personal information of applicants and enrollees, including Social Security numbers, dates of birth, names, addresses and financial information, could have been illegally accessed.

Florida KidCare is an umbrella name that incorporates four programs that provide health coverage for children from birth to age 18: Medicaid, MediKids, Florida Healthy Kids and the Children’s Medical Services program.

The Florida Healthy Kids Corp., set up in state law, administers the Florida Healthy Kids program, which provides subsidized insurance for children living in families who have too much money to qualify for traditional Medicaid.

The nonprofit corporation also provides administrative services for the other three KidCare programs.

According to the statement Thursday, the corporation has “no confirmation at this time that anyone’s personal information was removed from the system.”

But it is encouraging anyone who applied or enrolled over the seven-year period to set up fraud alerts or security freezes with one of three national credit reporting agencies and to monitor bank reports for suspicious activity.

“FHKC (Florida Healthy Kids Corp.) is committed to taking every reasonable step to prevent future breaches, which will include a review of our current security practices and policies to identify ways to strengthen them,” the corporation said.

“FHKC is accelerating efforts previously underway to transition the website to a new vendor. These efforts will help ensure family information is protected.”

Copyright 2021 Health News Florida

WUSF 89.7 depends on donors for the funding it takes to provide you the most trusted source of news and information here in town, across our state, and around the world. Support WUSF now by giving monthly, or make a one-time donation online.