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Sheller, P.C. is investigating a data breach of Sutter Health, which has left the private information of more than 4 million patients in the Sutter Health network of providers vulnerable to exposure.

The breach occurred over the weekend of October 15, 2011, when a password-protected unencrypted desktop computer was allegedly stolen from Sutter Medical Foundation's offices in Sacramento, California.

Sutter Health reported the theft to local police the following Monday. According to initial reports, more the private information of more than 4 million patients could be accessed as a result of the breach.

The stolen data includes names, addresses, email addresses, dates of birth, telephone numbers, health insurance plans, and descriptions of medical diagnoses or procedures.

In the wrong hands, the sensitive information could be used to accomplish identity theft, such as fraudulently opening security cards, bank accounts, or obtaining public benefits. According to Javelin Strategy and Research, more than 11 million Americans were victims of identity theft in 2009, with a total fraud estimated to be at $54 billion. (See here).

Sheller P.C. is currently pursuing a class action lawsuit for a May 2009 data breach at Health Net, a California insurance company. If you have been affected by the Sutter Health breach, please contact us at (800) 883-2299.

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