SAIC Hit With $4.9B Lawsuit Over TRICARE Data Theft

TRICARE contractor SAIC got slammed on Oct. 26 with a class action lawsuit seeking as much as $4.9 billion in damages after health-care beneficiaries' records were stolen from the car of an employee in San Antonio.

A separate lawsuit was filed on October 10 against the Defense Department by the law firm of Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker of Potomac, Md. That class action also seeks $4.9 billion in damages -- but not from SAIC.

The suit last week was filed by the Coffman Law Firm of Beaumont, Texas, on behalf of Fernando Arellano of Leandro, Texas, who has been treated in military hospitals in the San Antonio area since 2008.

Arellano seeks from $100 to $1,000 in damages for all 4.9 million TRICARE beneficiaries whose records were on the computer tapes, or between $490 million and $4.9 billion. He said his health care information as well as personal information was on the backup tapes that were stolen on September 13.

Besides monetary damages, Arellano also asked for free credit monitoring reports for the entire class covered by the suit, which could cost SAIC as much as $146.8 million.

SAIC spokesman Vernon Guidry declined to comment on the suit.