Medicare security probe
POLICE have been called in to investigate how people’s Medicare card numbers ended up for sale on the dark web.
The alarming security breach was revealed yesterday and referred to the Australian Federal Police by Human Services Minister Alan Tudge, who said it was of “great concern” to the Government.
It was reported Medicare card details were purchased for less than $ 30 from a dark net vendor running what was dubbed chine”.
Mr Tudge would not reveal how people’s private details had ended up on the dark web but he said there was “no indication that there’s been a widescale breach” of government systems.
“There has not been a cyber security breach of our systems as such, but rather it’s more likely to have been traditional “the Medicare ma- criminal said.
He said only a “very small” number of people had been caught up in the incident.
Acting Opposition Leader Tanya Plibersek said it was “absolutely critical” the Government told Australians how many records had been breached, when the incident was discovered and what action was being taken to protect activity,” Mr Tudge the identities of people whose records had been sold.
“Then the Government really needs to investigate how this breach occurred and what can be done to prevent similar breaches in the future,” Ms Plibersek said.
“This is a very, very serious privacy breach.”
Mr Tudge pointed out that the information purchased from the dark web was “not sufficient to access any sonal health record”.
“The only information claimed to be supplied by the site was the Medicare card number,” he said. “Any apparent unauthorised access to Medicare card numbers is nevertheless of great concern.”
Mr Tudge said the Department of Human Services was receiving constant advice about its cyber security ar- per- rangements from the Australian Signals Directorate.
The Assistant Minister to the Treasurer, Michael Sukkar, said it was an “extremely concerning” incident.
“It’s very alarming to me if any of that data is finding its way into hands that it shouldn’t be,” he said.
“This is going to be an ongoing issue as more and more of our information ultimately is collected and stored online. Governments are going to have to be much better at protecting that data.”