North Dakota Insurance Commissioner Jim Poolman has formally rebuked Humana Inc. over a recent theft of private financial information of 268 of its policyholders.
The stolen information included names, addresses, Social Security numbers and bank routing information, according to Poolman.
A Humana spokesman acknowledged the theft, saying the information was on a laptop stolen from an employee of an unidentified independent insurance agency in Minnesota, which also represents the company in North Dakota.
In a stern letter to Humana President and Chief Executive Michael B. McCallister, Poolman accused the company of not doing enough to protect the affected policyholders and failing to notify the state insurance department about the theft.
“They need to display concern for the consumers, because identity theft is incredibly dangerous for people,” Poolman said in a statement. Humana showed “a complete disregard for the consumers that they’re supposed to be serving,” he added.
The Humana spokesman said the company had not yet received the letter but that it had acted promptly to alert the affected clients that their identities were compromised.
“When the police informed us of the theft, we got hold of the actual applications, called all 268 policyholders and sent them letters,” says spokesman Chris Curran. “We also offered to enroll them for free in a credit reporting service to assure their credit was not impacted.”
The theft occurred when the employee took home a laptop that included Medicare applications from Humana. The computer then was stolen from the back seat of the employee’s car.
“The employee violated our policies when he left it in an unsecured location,” Curran says.
After its own investigation, Humana has provided training and education to the agency’s employees to increase their awareness of privacy concerns, he said.
Of the applications, 222 were from Minnesota and the remainder of them were from North Dakota, Curran said. The company alerted the Minnesota Department of Insurance of the theft, he added, but he did not know if the North Dakota department also had been notified.