WASHINGTON (AP) — Cybersecurity concerns over the Affordable Care Act's online insurance marketplace have been cleared up through testing, a government security professional who initially had qualms about the system assured lawmakers Thursday.
But a congressional hearing featuring senior technology experts from the Health and Human Services Department also revealed a broader internal debate before the launch of HealthCare.gov last fall.
HHS Chief Information Officer Frank Baitman said he personally brought security concerns to the attention of the department's second-in-command, Bill Corr, as well as another senior official.
The maddening technical glitches that frustrated consumers for weeks as they tried to sign up for insurance would pale in comparison if a serious security breach compromised personal information.
Republicans on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee are trying to build a case that the administration recklessly ignored security concerns to meet a self-imposed Oct. 1 deadline. The administration says all concerns were addressed by special vigilance instituted just before the launch. While Republicans have raised questions, they have yet to find any problems.
Officials told the committee no that attempted attack by hackers has succeeded.
The Medicare system's top cybersecurity official testified Thursday that the revamped website passed full security tests Dec. 18, easing her earlier concerns. Teresa Fryer said she would now recommend full operational and security certification for the site.
She agreed with a suggestion by Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., that HealthCare.gov now has “a clean bill of health.”
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