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Tag: identity theft

Identity Theft Targeted 17.6 Million Americans at Cost of $15.4B

Identity theftBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Identity thieves victimized about 7% of the U.S.’s adult population last year, the Justice Department reported.

About 17.6 million Americans older than 16 were targeted, The Washington Times reports. 

About 86% of those victims reported that identity thieves attempted to open credit cards or bank accounts in their name.

As a result of the thefts, victims lost a total of $15.4 billion.

Elderly people and household with annual incomes were disproportionately targeted.

DEA Releases Wrongly Jailed Man Who Was Accused of Dealing Drugs in California

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The DEA has released a man wrongly jailed for two weeks after he was mistook as a drug dealer, CBS Los Angeles reports.

His girlfriend had been trying to tell authorities that Gerber Guzman’s identity had been stolen and he was not the man wanted for dealing drugs.

But it wasn’t until CBS Los Angeles got involved that federal authorities took action.

Guzman, who has been locked before because of the stolen identity, was pulled over for an expired car registration and was taken into custody on an outstanding warrant.

“The thing is that they know it’s not him, but they still have him in there, and that’s what’s heartbreaking,” said Hernandez, who is eight months pregnant.

The DEA confirmed the mistake in a statement: “DEA is aware of claims that the man in custody is not the same person for whom the arrest warrant was issued. DEA takes all allegations of this nature seriously and is currently using ever resource at our disposal to address the matter.”

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

 

Former Teacher on FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List Is Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison for Producing Child Porn

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Eric Toth, a former teacher placed on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List in 2012 for producing pornography, was sentenced Tuesday to 25 years in prison, Reuters reports.

Toth took videos and photographs of children while he was a camp counselor in Wisconsin and a teacher in Washington D.C.

Toth, who pleaded guilty to three counts of production of child pornography and to one count each of misuse of a Social Security number and identity theft in December, was arrested in Nicaragua in April 2013 and was extradited to the U.S.

U.S. District Court Judge Rudolph Contreras also sentenced Toth to lifetime supervision after his release.

Florida Man Sentenced to 3 Years in Audacious Scheme to Steal Identities of First Lady, ex-FBI Director Robert Mueller

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Talk about brazen.

A Florida teen tried to steal the identity of former FBI director Robert Mueller and First Lady Michelle Obama, the Examiner reports.

Luis Flores Jr., 19., who also is accused of targeting Kim Kardashian, was sentenced recently to three years in prison.

What did he plan to do with the identities?

According to the Examiner, Flores was using personal information in hopes of gaining access to money or credit.

Secret Service Investigates Massive Breach of Credit Cards at Target During Holidays

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Just as the holidays kick into high gear, Target is reporting a security breach involving stolen credit card and debit card information for millions of customers, the New York Times reports.

The Secret Service is investigating a breach that apparently occurred on the day after Thanksgiving and may still be happening.

Authorities worry that cybercriminals are creating counterfeit cards and may even be able to withdraw cash through an ATM, the Times reported.

Target and major credit card companies also are investigating.

Secret Service investigates Increasing Number of Credit Card “Skimming” Cases

krebsonsecurity.com/all-about-skimmers

krebsonsecurity.com/all-about-skimmers

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

When you hand over your credit card, be careful what happens to it.

The Secret Service is reporting an increasing number of cases of credit card “skimming,” or thieves copying information on the card, the South Jersey Times reports.

The information, such as the name, card number and expiration date, often is sold to someone else, who uses it to make purchases.

“Sometimes in a restaurant, or at a gas station, an employee takes that card, and they’re paid by someone else for the information on it,” said Cynthia Wofford, Special Agent in charge of the Secret Service’s Philadelphia field office.

FBI Busts 15 in $8.7 Mil Midwest Unemployment Insurance Scam

Shoshanna Utchenik
ticklethewire.com

In general, the entrepreneurial spirit should be lauded. Unfortunately, in this case, it was purely criminal.

According to an FBI press release, 15 defendants allegedly registered 80 fake business names in Illinois, Indiana and Minnesota, then used these to file for unemployment insurance benefits to the tune of $8.7 Million. Defendants reportedly received unemployment debit cards for themselves, friends and family members, using false social security numbers and the sham businesses. A federal grand jury indicted the 15 defendants Tuesday in Illinois on 60 counts that include a range of tax, fraud and identity theft charges.

To read more click here.

FBI Busts Sheriff on Conspiracy, Obstruction Charges

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

A Louisiana Sheriff was arrested on conspiracy, computer fraud, identity theft and obstruction charges, the FBI announced in a statement.

Sheriff Royce Edward Toney, 64, of Monroe, La., was arrested on Friday, according to the FBI. The indictment alleges that Toney and another man engaged in a conspiracy to illegally track the communications of a third party and that, once he learned the FBI sought to speak with him, he attempted to cover up the illegal tracking, according to the FBI.

From April to October of 2010 Toney and another man allegedly accessed protected computers without authorization and committed identity theft by using the AOL e-mail address and password of another persons. Toney is charged with obstruction both for reformatting the victim’s computer and for retaliating against a witness who spoke to the FBI in the investigation.