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Bitdefender data breach: $15K ransom set for stolen records


In a bizarre twist of events, cybersecurity firm Bitdefender has suffered a data breach by a hacker calling himself “DetoxRansome.” The news broke of the Bitdefender data breach after DetoxRansome tweeted the following message: “Guess what guys Bitdefender has been toppled by yours truly.” The hacker is now demanding $15,000 from the cybersecurity company, or else he/she will allegedly release Bitdefender’s customer database information to the web’s infamous black market. To prove the seriousness of the situation, the hacker revealed the login credentials for two Bitdefender employees, as well as one customer. Travis Douring and Dan McPeake, security researchers with ... Read More

NuVasive settles whistleblower fraud allegations for $13.5 million


California medical device manufacturer NuVasive Inc. will pay the U.S. $13.5 million to settle a whistleblower lawsuit that alleged the company pushed its CoRoent System  spine devices for uses that weren’t approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) – a scheme that allegedly caused numerous health care providers to submit false claims to Medicare and other taxpayer-funded health care programs. According to the U.S. Justice Department, the civil settlement resolves a lawsuit filed under the whistleblower provision of the False Claims Act by Kevin Ryan, a former NuVasive sales representative. Mr. Ryan accused NuVasive promoting its CoRoent System ... Read More

Woman claims Mirena IUD caused partial blindness

mirena IUD

A woman who filed a lawsuit against Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals Inc., alleging the company’s Mirena IUD (intrauterine device) caused her to go partially blind will move forward after a Kentucky federal judge kept alive two contested claims with strict liability and negligent misrepresentation. The judge did trim an implied warranty claim, supporting Bayer’s argument that the plaintiff did not buy the device directly from the company. Kara Stanley’s lawsuit claims she had the Mirena IUD inserted by a doctor at a women’s health care facility in southern Indiana in May 2012. Seven months later, she began having severe headaches and ... Read More

Woman sues Eliquis makers over husband’s bleeding death


A woman has filed a lawsuit against Pfizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., claiming the drug companies failed to warn her and her husband that the blood thinner Eliquis could cause potentially fatal bleeding events. Deobrah Herschell claims that her husband, Donald, took Eliquis for three months to treat his irregular heart rhythm, but died from a major gastrointestinal hemorrhage caused by the drug. Her lawsuit alleges that the drug makers “chose incompetent and untrustworthy agents in China” to conduct clinical trials in order to win Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval, but hid unfavorable data from those studies. Herschell also ... Read More

Mississippi man hospitalized after guardrail impales his car

guard-rail - KCPQ-TV image

A Mississippi man is in stable condition in a Northern Virginia hospital after losing control of his vehicle on a wet highway and colliding with a guardrail Wednesday. Reports and images taken of the crash show the guardrail apparently malfunctioned and impaled the man’s vehicle, further raising concerns that some guardrails may be defective and potentially deadly. Authorities investigating the crash aren’t certain whether the guardrails that sliced through 31-year-old Clayton Dominic Johnson’s 1996 Nissan were made by Trinity Industries, the Texas company that manufactured the controversial ET-Plus guardrail systems targeted by a recent whistleblower lawsuit. Joshua Harmon, himself a ... Read More

The Fraud List: CVS Caremark profits from Medicaid fraud

The Fraud List

CVS Caremark is the pharmacy benefit management and drugs-by-mail division of CVS Health, a Woonsocket, R.I., based company currently ranked by Fortune Global 500 as the 35th largest corporation in the world in terms of revenue. As both the owner of nearly 70,000 retail pharmacies and the manager of pharmacy services for thousands of clients, the CVS family of companies is well positioned to make enormous profits in the health care field. The corporation manages pharmacy benefit services for employers, health insurance companies, unions, government employee groups, managed care organizations, and other health care plan providers throughout the U.S. CVS Caremark, ... Read More

Judge refuses to dismiss Prozac birth defects lawsuit

preemie baby

A lawsuit filed by a woman who claims taking Eli Lilly & Co.’s antidepressant Prozac during pregnancy caused her child to be born with a heart defect will move forward after an Alabama federal court refused the drug company’s motion to dismiss the case. U.S. District Judge Keith Watkins found that the plaintiff, Dana Fields, had a genuine dispute against Eli Lilly, and that she could show factual causation that her doctor would not have prescribed the drug to her had he known the risks, even though the doctor is now deceased. Fields claims that in 1996 she took Prozac ... Read More

Data breach class action against Neiman Marcus revived by the 7th Circuit


Despite a previous 2013 Supreme Court ruling stating that plaintiffs must be at imminent risk of suffering a concrete injury to sue in federal court, data breach class action plaintiffs received new hope thanks to the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. This week, the 7th Circuit panel took the liberty of reinstating a data breach class action against retailer Neiman Marcus by stating that the theft of customer financial records was enough to permit federal trial. Before the 7th Circuit’s ruling, data breach class action plaintiffs faced a seemingly unconquerable hill due to a past Supreme Court ruling in ... Read More

Judge ups Endo whistleblower’s FCA award to $33.6 million


A former Lidoderm sales representative for Endo Health Solutions and its subsidiary Endo Pharmaceuticals will receive a $33.6-million payout as her share of $172-million settlement she was instrumental in bringing about with her whistleblower lawsuit. Peggy Ryan sued her former employer in 2005 under the False Claims Act, alleging the company misbranded Lidoderm, a prescription drug for shingles pain, and pushed it for purposes not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In her whistleblower complaint, Ms. Ryan alleged that her superiors at Endo urged her to promote Lidoderm for off-label purposes by goading physicians to talk with ... Read More

The Fraud List: Omnicare Inc., King of Kickbacks

The Fraud List

The pharmacy benefit management industry is ferociously competitive. These companies process prescription drugs and pharmacy services to insurance companies, nursing homes, and other clients, using their size and clout to negotiate lower prices. Cincinnati-headquartered Omnicare Inc. is the largest provider of prescription drugs and pharmacy consulting services to nursing homes and other long-term care facilities in the U.S.  It is also one of the top violators of federal laws designed to protect the integrity and viability of Medicare, Medicaid, and other taxpayer-funded government health care programs. Omnicare’s rap sheet shows that for more than a decade, the company has engaged ... Read More