Archive for Legal

Identity Theft Victim Speaks Out About 16 Year Ordeal

Posted in Business, Economy, Identity Theft, Legal, Life Improvement, News with tags , , , , , , , on August 15, 2009 by truthwillrise



JACKSONVILLE, FL — Like many of us, Ieshia Brown has heard of identity theft, but now she’s living it and says it is a nightmare.

Brown says,”It is terrible! My credit is ruined and now it has messed up my driving record.”

Brown says it started in 1993 with her driver’s license. Someone had stolen her ID and used it to get a license. “I’ve been in jail because of an outstanding warrant for worthless checks in my name and it wasn’t me,” says Brown.

Brown says that case was dismissed, but the problems related to ID theft continue to haunt her.

In February, because of the number of moving violations in her name, the state revoked her driver’s license and called her an Habitual Traffic Offender.

“I’ve had about ten tickets since driving all of those are by someone else, those are five pages of tickets,” says Brown.

In 1997, the DMV provided Brown with a letter showing that an imposter had used her ID to obtain a license. The state then placed a fraud alert on her driving record.

“I don’t know what to do to get it straight,” says Brown.

Brown says the fraud alert apparently did not help, and all she wants his her life back to normal.

“I want my license back and my driving record straight,” says Brown.

Until it is, if she’s caught driving she faces up to 15 months in jail, something she says she wants to avoid.

‘On Your Side’ contacted the Florida DMV. Spokesperson Ann Nucatola says generally if someone finds themselve the victim of identity theft, all they have to do is take a copy of the police report to the district office and request an adminstrative review.

Nucatola says given the lengthy history of problems with Browns driving license, they are now reviewing the case.

The Federal Trade Commission has tips on protecting yourself from identity theft and what to do if you’re a victim, CLICK HERE to find out more


For more information on Identity Theft as well as what you can do before you become a victim of Identity Theft, please call 1-866-510-7907 or log on to or

Man steals dead brother’s identity

Posted in 1, Identity Theft, Legal, News with tags , , , , , on August 10, 2009 by truthwillrise

Criminal record kept him from finding

Updated: Friday, 07 Aug 2009, 11:21 PM EDT
Published : Friday, 07 Aug 2009, 10:55 PM EDT

ROCKFORD, Mich. (WOOD) – Errol Copeland of Rockford was sentenced to 60 days in jail after pleading guilty to identity theft in both Kent and Montcalm Counties.

Copeland has a criminal record stemming from a breaking and entering conviction in Kalamazoo county in 1988.

24 Hour News 8 is told that conviction led to problems finding work, so he took the name of his brother Erin who died as an infant.

Neighbors say Copeland mostly kept to himself.

The Greenville Daily News reports he was arrested when he was pulled over by a police officer who knew Copeland’s name was Errol from their days at school.

That officer noticed his license had a different name on it.

Copeland is being allowed to wait until September to begin serving his jail sentence.

 For more information on identity theft, please log on to or call Brandon King at 1-866-510-7907.

Who Knew? “Pre-Paid” Legal Services

Posted in Business, General, Identity Theft, Legal, Life Improvement, News with tags , , , , , on August 7, 2009 by truthwillrise

3:52 PM August 5th, 2009 by Beth Slovicphoto

For about a month now, Tom Benson has been pitching “pre-paid” legal services to Portlanders from a table across from the Multnomah County Courthouse downtown.

Never heard of that? Neither had I. So this afternoon I stopped by Benson’s table to learn about the company, which charges about $360 a year per couple.

Fair warning: If you stop to talk to Benson, too, you’ll learn a “pre-paid” legal service works “like an HMO” with referrals to lawyers, then time will stop and you’ll feel like you’re trapped in an infomercial for the Slap Chop.

ID Theft ad

In the brief moment I was at the table, a man who looked like he might actually need a lawyer’s help came rushing over. “Are you going to be here for another 30 minutes?” he asked. Yes, Benson said. But instead of indicating he was interested in Benson’s services, he handed the salesman a folding knife. “Can you watch this for my girlfriend?” he asked. “She has to go in there,” he said, gesturing at the courthouse. Now, there’s a business niche.


For more information on what a Pre-Paid Legal membership consists of, please log on to or or call 1-866-510-7907.

Identity Theft Risk for National Guard Members

Posted in Business, Identity Theft, Legal with tags , , , , on August 7, 2009 by truthwillrise

By Ann-Elise Henzl
August 6, 2009 | WUWM | Milwaukee, WI

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The theft of a laptop computer has endangered the personal information of more than 130,000 soldiers across the nation. In Wisconsin, 1,700 members of the National Guard are affected. 

The laptop was owned by an Army National Guard contractor. It contained names, Social Security numbers and other personal data. 

Maj. Jackie Guthrie says the Guard is informing affected soldiers, and urging them to take security measures. 

“That’s ensuring that you put fraud alerts out to your banks and report it to the credit card agencies, you’re more meticulous about watching your accounts, nothing different than any other individual would do if you lost your wallet,” Guthrie says. 

Guthrie says as far as she knows, no Guard members from Wisconsin have been the victims of identity theft, as a result of the stolen computer. 


If you think you may have been affected by this breach, or are concerned about Identity Theft, please log on to  or or you can call 1-866-510-7907 for more information on what you can do before you become a victim of identity theft.

Identity theft: America’s fastest growing crime

Posted in Business, Economy, Identity Theft, Life Improvement with tags , , , , on July 10, 2009 by truthwillrise

Today’s versions of John Dilinger or Baby Face Nelson are more likely to use a laptop computer than a gun. Logging on to the internet under an alias is quite a bit safer than robbing a bank. This is why Identity Theft is America’s fastest growing crime. In Pennsylvania the number of victims of identity theft runs into the tens of thousands.

There are numerous ways a criminal can obtain one’e identity. Some of the more obvious methods of obtaining identifying infromation would be; stealing a person’s preapproved credit card applications from their mail, a store employee recording credit card numbers while processing consumer transactions, or stealing someone’s wallet or purse and using the credit cards contained inside.

Here are the more sophisticated methods. An employee of an Internet Service Provider can be paid off to allow the criminal access to numerous customer e-mail accounts. Or an employee of a company’s payroll department can be encouraged to provide the employment applications of job candidates to the thief.

Now how do we protect ourselves from these invasions, the following are suggestions from the US Postal Inspectors:

1. Place all outgoing mail in a blue postal box instead of a residential mail box.

2. Shred all preapproved credit applications, financial statements, and old credit cards.

3. Order a copy of your credit report once per year and check for any unauthorized purchases.

4. Limit the amount of information that you put over the phone or internet.

Here are the steps you should take when your identity has already been compromised.

1. File a police report.

2. Obtain a complete copy of the Identity Theft Affidavit.

3. Close all compromised accounts.

4. Place a fraud alert with the credit bureaus.

5. Request that credit reporting bureaus block fraudulent information.

6. File a complaint witht he Federal Trade Commission.

For more detailed nformation and procedures Pennsylvania residents can access the PA Attorney General’s website: Click on the Consumers tab then scroll down to Identity Theft toolkit. You can also call Identity Theft Shield at 1-866-510-7907 or log on to for further information on what people can do BEFORE they become victims of identity thef.

Data breach hits Commonwealth Solar

Posted in Business, Economy, Identity Theft, Legal, News with tags , , , , on June 29, 2009 by truthwillrise

Boston Business Journal – by Jackie Noblett

About 810 residents who had applied for the Massachusetts Commonwealth Solar rebate program had their personal information posted on a government Web site for nearly an hour, according to a notice from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.

The quasi-public agency that administers the program said a file containing the names, addresses and Social Security numbers of customers and businesses was posted on the MTC’s Web site for 50 minutes June 25 before being taken down. The data breach affected most of the people who applied for the program. As of May 31, 846 residents had submitted applications.

A security consultant hired by the agency found that one user accessed the file during the incident.

“I sincerely apologize to our customers for this incident and any inconvenience or concern it may cause,” Massachusetts Technology Collaborative deputy executive director Philip Holahan said in a statement. “We are taking all possible steps to protect our customers’ information and ensure that such a breach does not happen again.”

The agency will provide free credit-monitoring services to those affected by the breach and will review its internal data security and encryption protocols. It has also informed the state attorney general’s office as well as the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation, per an executive order signed by Gov. Deval Patrick last year.

Launched in 2008, the Commonwealth Solar program provides rebates to individuals, businesses and communities that install solar photovoltaic systems on their property. It is the major financial driver behind a state goal to install 250 megawatts of solar in Massachusetts by 2017.


If you were affected by this latest data breach, know anyone who was, or just concerned about Identity Theft, please call Brandon King at 1-866-510-7907 or go to

Make sure red flags rules are on your radar screen

Posted in Economy, Identity Theft, Legal, Life Improvement, News with tags , , , , , , , on June 29, 2009 by truthwillrise

Fri, 2009-06-26 14:47 — Steve Grant

Red Flags

There’s so much to keep tabs on … increasing regulation, rapidly fluctuating market conditions, changing lender relationships and more. Properly managing it all can make you feel like an air traffic controller. Here is one more thing that you should be aware of: The “Red Flags” rules, which go into effect May 1. By this date, it’s important to have detailed policies and procedures in place to effectively detect, prevent and mitigate identity theft. These rules, which have been in the pipeline for more than a year, call for an alert, proactive attitude toward protecting customers, including mortgage customers. Although there aren’t any criminal penalties for not following these rules, violators could be subject to civil monetary penalties. So consider identity theft a big “blip” on your personal radar.

Understanding the rules, and committing to following them, is just the first step. There’s the practical matter of being able to catch everything and prevent incidents. The latest technology can help you stay on top of it all without breaking a sweat.

How the “Red Flags” rules came to be
Each year, despite the best efforts of financial institutions and law enforcement, identity thieves devise new ways to steal personal information. In 2007 alone, more than 250,000 identity theft complaints were received by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), according to media reports.
Because of this ongoing concern, and the need for intensive action, a number of agencies including the FTC, bank regulatory agencies and the National Credit Union Administration created the Red Flags rules, as part of the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA) of 2003, technically Sections 114 and 315. Identification and detection of patterns, practices or specific activities that could be related to identity theft are required, along with guidelines on specific, continual responses.

Who needs to be aware of this? Professionals at any financial institution that hold a “transaction account” belonging to a customer. This can include local banks, savings and loans and credit unions. Importantly for mortgage brokers, it also includes creditors, and the so-called “covered accounts” include mortgages. Also in the mix are finance companies, utilities and telecommunications companies.

What to look for
So how can you prevent identity theft as instances occur? There are several key pieces of information to look for, including:

◄ Alerts, notifications or warnings from consumer reporting agencies that suspicious activity may have taken place. This can include anything from excessive inquiries for information to an unusually high number of financial transactions, both of which might indicate fraud.

◄ Suspicious documents or personal identifying information. This would include documents that appear to be forged or contain information inconsistent with other pieces of identification.

◄ Unusual or suspicious activity on an account—noticeably different from typical activity.

◄ Information that comes directly from customers, victims of identity theft or law enforcement authorities.

Ongoing awareness is key. Some fraud can be caught in person, but technology is a great partner. There are plenty of services that provide pieces of information that can serve as notice about potential identity theft. The challenge is gathering all the information in a meaningful and easy-to-use way.

For example, each of the three major credit bureaus—Equifax, Experian and TransUnion—offer fraud prevention services as part of their credit report services. They flag phone numbers and addresses considered high risk, and when application information is submitted that doesn’t match what is already on file from the customer.

The systems also reports if there have been excessive credit inquiries on a given Social Security number, and tracks the use of Social Security numbers for deceased individuals or numbers not yet issued. Luckily, there are providers that consolidate information from the three agencies into one report.

Here’s another resource: Alerts by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) allow a professional to automatically check borrower records against the U.S. Treasury’s master list of Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons, which contains thousands of individual names. These individuals may be more likely to commit fraud.

There’s assistance from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that can be helpful as well. For example, TRV (tax return verification) reports provide a streamlined method of verifying a borrower’s tax information by electronically comparing the income-related lines of the borrower’s tax return with the same lines on file at the IRS. This data can be obtained on any individual or business that has authorized the release of this information in connection with an application for credit. Any variations uncovered can be highlighted in an easily read report. TRVs offer further protection against fraud by verifying that the applicant’s information matches Social Security Administration files.

What you’ll need to do
Just like an air traffic controller needs to make the right decisions without panicking, so will you as a mortgage professional. It’s all about having a plan in place focused on prevention and reaction to incidents.

A big step is putting your program in writing, and in as much detail as possible. Not only must you say how you will work to prevent identity theft and mitigate it if it happens, you must be able to explain how you will update and execute on this plan for the future. You’ll need to think through how employees will be trained, and how this will be verified and continually improved upon.  Importantly, there needs to be buy-in from senior leaders within your company, since they are ultimately charged with overseeing the program.

Like a successful air traffic controller, a mortgage professional needs to rely on the right technology and expertise to keep everything moving smoothly. Taking a few important steps where identity theft protection and compliance with the Red Flags rules are concerned will keep your business under firm control.


If you are concerned about how the red flag rules may affect you and your business, please give Brandon King a call at 1-866-510-7907.

Pre-Paid Legal Information

Posted in 1, Business, Economy, Identity Theft, Legal, Life Improvement with tags , , , , , , , , on June 28, 2009 by truthwillrise


For further information about the services mentioned in the powerpoint, please call King and Assoc. at 1-866-510-7907 or log on to or

Security Breach Leaves 45,000 at Risk of Identity Theft

Posted in Business, Economy, Identity Theft, Legal, News with tags , , , , , on June 25, 2009 by truthwillrise

June 24, 2009 – 6:30pm
By Sun Staff

On Tuesday Cornell informed more than 45,000 current and former members of the University community that their sensitive personal information — including name and social security number — had been exposed when a University-owned laptop was stolen earlier this month.

The breach exposes many Cornellians to the possibility of identity theft, and the University said it will provide protective services to those affected, including free credit reporting, credit monitoring and identity theft restoration services to those affected by the breach.

A University employee, described as “a member of the Cornell technical staff” had access to a computer containing the sensitive data for the purposes of correcting file-processing transmission errors, according to the University.

The files on the computer containing the names and social security numbers were not encrypted and the laptop was left in a physically unsecure environment, which violates University policy, according to Simeon Moss ’73, director of Cornell University Press Relations.

Moss said that the data on the laptop contained “no other sensitive data elements” besides names and social security numbers and the University is “confident” that it has identified everyone whose data was on the computer.

The stolen computer stored the social security numbers of 22,546 students (10,597 of whom are alumni) and 22,731 faculty and staff members (of whom 4,284 are retirees or other separated employees), according to Moss.

New York State Police have launched an investigation to find the thief and locate the computer.

State Police Investigator Aaron Lewis told The Sun on Wednesday that there is a chance that the person who stole the laptop does not know that it contains such sensitive information.

“There is no indication that this is a sophisticated type of operation to steal people’s identities,” Lewis said. “It appears to be more of a crime of opportunity.”

Lewis said that investigators have interviewed people involved in the incident as well as the Cornell employee who had custody of the computer. Thus far, however, there are no further leads and the case remains open, he said.

The employee who had the computer is not a suspect in the investigation, Lewis added.

Cornell officials have only said that the employee violated University policy by leaving the laptop in a physically unsecured location, and characterized the person’s actions as “unintentional.” They have declined to comment on whether the person was still employed or has been the subject of any disciplinary action.

Lewis also cautioned that since the breach has been widely reported in the media, there is now a greater chance that someone will realize that the laptop contains the sensitive data.

“It’s obviously a Cornell computer and has a Cornell sticker,” Lewis said.

Laptop thefts on college campuses like Cornell occur somewhat frequently, he said, and most never get recovered.

Both Lewis and University officials declined to comment on when and from where the laptop was stolen.

“Cornell informed us within a few days that [the laptop] possibly has sensitive information on it,” Lewis said.

“It did take the university some time to make sure that they knew all the information that was on the computer,” Moss said.

Moss said that while Cornell Police would assist other law enforcement agencies, they are not involved in the investigation. The Ithaca Police Department said it was not involved in the case.

While officials said there has been no indication that the exposed data has been abused, the incident shines light on the broader issue of security and the vulnerability of private information in the digital age.

Last June, a computer at Cornell used for administrative purposes was hacked, and the University alerted 2,500 students and alumni that their personal information had potentially been stolen. In 2005, the University alerted over 900 individuals that their personal information was stored on a computer that had been inappropriately accessed.

Lewis said that those affected by the recent data breach should follow Cornell’s protocol. There is no need to call local or state authorities unless one’s information is stolen and used in an unauthorized way, he added.

Cornell said it will provide credit monitoring and identity theft restoration services through Kroll, Inc. at no charge to affected individuals. The University said it will provide those individuals with more information about how to access the services in a letter sent via U.S. mail.

Moss said on Wednesday that the cost to the University of providing these services was not available and likely unknown at this point.

“Given the importance that Cornell places on data security, this is truly an unfortunate situation,” Vice President for University Communications Tommy Bruce said in a statement on Wednesday. “We apologize to all those who have been affected, and we are dedicated to resolving this matter fully.”

If you are affected by this latest breach, think you may be, know someone who is, or just concerned about Identity Theft in general please log on to or call 1-866-510-7907 to get some help.

ID theft turns area college student’s life upside-down

Posted in Business, Economy, Identity Theft, Legal, Life Improvement, News with tags , , , , on June 25, 2009 by truthwillrise

By Kim Lamb Gregory (Contact)
Tuesday, June 23, 2009

 For 18 years, someone has been using the identity of Maria Gonzalez to lease cars, get credit cards and apply for bank accounts. The identity thief has inflicted heavy damage on Gonzalez’s credit rating. Photo by Rob Varela

For 18 years, someone has been using the identity of Maria Gonzalez to lease cars, get credit cards and apply for bank accounts. The identity thief has inflicted heavy damage on Gonzalez’s credit rating.

 Ventura College student Maria Gonzalez is a victim of identity theft. Gonzalez and her mother think someone took her mother’s purse when Maria was 2, and the person has been using her ID ever since. Photo by Rob Varela

Ventura College student Maria Gonzalez is a victim of identity theft. Gonzalez and her mother think someone took her mother’s purse when Maria was 2, and the person has been using her ID ever since.

 Maria Gonzalez said she quickly felt overwhelmed when she began trying to fix the problems inflicted by someone who’d been using her identity for 18 years. Photo by Rob Varela

Maria Gonzalez said she quickly felt overwhelmed when she began trying to fix the problems inflicted by someone who’d been using her identity for 18 years.

 Ventura College student Maria Gonzalez is a victim of identity theft. Gonzalez and her mother think someone took her mother’s purse when Maria was 2, and the person has been using her ID ever since. Photo by Rob Varela

Ventura College student Maria Gonzalez is a victim of identity theft. Gonzalez and her mother think someone took her mother’s purse when Maria was 2, and the person has been using her ID ever since.

 Maria Gonzalez said she quickly felt overwhelmed when she began trying to fix the problems inflicted by someone who’d been using her identity for 18 years. Photo by Rob Varela

Maria Gonzalez said she quickly felt overwhelmed when she began trying to fix the problems inflicted by someone who’d been using her identity for 18 years.

Maria Gonzalez is never late with a bill. She has a 4.0 grade-point average at Ventura College and holds down a job as a switchboard operator. But she is often treated like a deadbeat.

“I can’t get an apartment, I can’t purchase a car. I’m rejected for credit cards at Penneys and Target,” she said. “I have the worst credit.”

That’s because somebody else has been using her Social Security number for about 18 years.

“I’m not comfortable ever,” said the 20-year-old.

Gonzalez is a member of an expanding group of identity theft victims in the United States. The Federal Trade Commission says identity theft was the No. 1 complaint received by its Consumer Sentinel Network in 2008. Twenty-six percent of the 1.2 million complaints the network received last year concerned identity theft — more than 300,000 complaints.

It’s become such a problem that a representative from the FTC went before a U.S. House subcommittee last week to discuss recommendations for preventing the kind of misery that has consumed much of Gonzalez’s life.

The first time Gonzalez realized there was a problem was when she went to register at Ventura College in 2006. Newly graduated from Oxnard High School, the 17-year-old wanted to earn an associate degree in criminal justice and psychology, and later attend a four-year university.

Thief had done a lot more

“I was registering and I found out I had a balance owed of $58,” Gonzalez said. “I said, ‘Excuse me, I’ve never attended Ventura College before.’ ”

Someone else had attended Ventura College using her name and her Social Security number. Before long, she would realize the ID thief had done a lot more.

The college issued her a special student identification number so she could register. Gonzalez immediately went to the Social Security Administration branch office in Ventura to figure out what was going on.

Gonzalez learned that whoever had stolen her identity had worked at some fast food restaurants. The thief had accrued about $30,000 in benefits, which the Social Security office clerk removed. Gonzalez said she was then given a pamphlet and one sheet essentially telling her to contact credit card companies and the police department.

“I think they figured I was just a kid and they had other things to concern themselves with. I honestly felt like they didn’t take me seriously,” Gonzalez said.

The acting regional manager of Ventura’s Social Security office, Mary Walters, said she can’t speak for something that happened three years ago, but it is office policy to be courteous to all customers. And it is policy to refer ID theft victims to the Federal Trade Commission, which is responsible for fielding ID theft complaints.

Gonzalez thinks the Social Security office should do more.

“Regardless, you take the time to explain what to do,” Gonzalez said. “You don’t just say, ‘Here’s the paper, figure it out for yourself.’ ”

‘The rules of the game’

Gonzalez felt completely overwhelmed. Linda Foley, founder of the nonprofit San Diego-based Identity Theft Resource Center, said Gonzalez’s reaction was not surprising.

“You’re thrown into this foreign world,” Foley said. “You don’t know the rules of the game. You don’t know you’re in a game. You don’t know who to talk to for advice.”

Gonzalez had no idea the Identity Theft Resource Center existed. Foley said most people don’t know because the agency, which helps ID theft victims all over the U.S., doesn’t have the budget to advertise.

Instead, ID theft victims start hacking away at their problem, calling credit card companies, filing police reports and getting nowhere, Foley said.

That’s exactly what happened to Gonzalez. She lives in Oxnard with her mother, Maria Cordona, 46, who is divorced from Gonzalez’s father.

After puzzling over it, they finally figured out Gonzalez’s information must have been stolen when Cordona’s purse was stolen 18 years ago, when Gonzalez was 2.

During that time, the thief worked, leased a Ford and didn’t pay for it, and defaulted on credit cards.

Gonzalez filed a report with the Oxnard Police Department, and it was assigned to Detective Rick Kline. His investigation has shown that the person with Gonzalez’s information has tried to open accounts in Port Hueneme, Oxnard and as far away as Bakersfield.

Kline said about 700 identity theft cases cross his desk every year, and he’s probably fielded about 2,000 cases since Gonzalez filed hers. Kline said catching these criminals is often like trying to catch smoke.

“It’s a crime that’s increased all over because it is a really easy crime to do,” he said. “There are almost no witnesses.”

Kline said he is willing to write a letter vouching for Gonzalez as she tries to clean up her credit.

Betsy Broder, assistant director of the FTC’s Division of Privacy and Identity Protection, said the process for ID theft victims is being constantly streamlined. Broder and a spokesman from the Identity Theft Resource Center spoke Wednesday in Washington, D.C., before the U.S. House Subcommittee on Information Policy.

Broder briefed the subcommittee on increased security in the public sector, such as removing Social Security numbers from military identification cards. She recommended similar precautions be taken in the private sector.

In 2006 — the same year Gonzalez discovered her problem — the Bush administration formed the President’s Identity Theft Task Force. It has launched a number of initiatives to assist identity theft victims when they begin “the arduous task of repairing their credit and restoring their good names,” Broder said.

It’s a huge, time-consuming pain to make calls, take notes and do everything necessary to clean up credit, but victims like Gonzalez have no other choice, Broder said.

“It’s really important she take the time to very carefully assess the damage and keep meticulous records,” Broder said. “It sounds like a tremendous burden, but at the end of the day, it makes a big difference.”


This is another tragic case of Identity Theft and it shows how far reaching this crime is and that it extends much further than just credit or finances. ID theft is a crime that is affecting more people every single day! Brandon King and his company is helping people everyday. To get more information about what this gentleman and his company are doing for people, please log on to their website at or by giving them a call at 1-877-510-7907.