Baylor College of Medicine

Cullen Building

Advarra, a vendor used by BCM reports cybersecurity incident

Lori Williams


Houston, TX -

In November 2023, Baylor College of Medicine was informed of a cybersecurity incident involving Advarra, a vendor the College uses to provide clinical research information services to carry out clinical trials.  The incident may have impacted study participants in breast cancer research at the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center at Baylor from 1999 to 2013. 

Advarra’s security incident was reported to have occurred in October 2023 and involved an unauthorized party gaining access to an Advarra employee’s email account and acquiring a limited amount of Advarra’s data.  Advarra promptly contained the incident by disabling the employee’s account and immediately launched an investigation into the nature and scope of the unauthorized access into its systems. Through the investigation, Advarra then conducted a review of the records to confirm the identities of individuals potentially affected by this event. Advarra has since taken a number of steps to enhance its information security. 

After completing what the company described as a thorough investigation, on Feb. 21, 2024, Advarra notified the College that certain files were accessed that contained names and dates of birth of participants in studies from 1999 to 2013. This incident did not involve any access to College systems, network or electronic health records.

While Advarra is unaware of any identity theft or fraud related to information acquired in this incident, as an additional precaution it is providing affected individuals complimentary credit monitoring services for 24 months. The identity monitoring services available include credit monitoring, fraud consultation and identity theft restoration services. 

Advarra takes this event and the security of information in its care seriously and stated it is very sorry for any inconvenience this incident has caused study participants. If you have any questions or would like to receive the complementary credit monitoring activities, assistance is available by calling (866) 983-9303, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Eastern time (excluding holidays).

If you have been enrolled as a study participant at the Duncan Cancer Center and want to know if your information was affected by this incident, please contact Advarra at (866) 983-9303.

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