August 6, 2015
YOUR PERSONAL financial information can't be completely protected. With the already immeasurable list of data breaches that seems to grow longer by the day, maybe we should be praying not for protection but for better interventions. Witness the recent news involving the Federal Trade Commission and LifeLock Inc., one of the leading companies in the identity-theft-protection business. The FTC has filed charges alleging that LifeLock violated a 2010 settlement in which the company vowed to stop making deceptive claims about its services and implement stronger measures to safeguard its own customers' personal data, including credit card, Social Security and bank account numbers.
June 24, 2015 |
For much of the last four years, Shelton Thomas assumed the identity of Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams in a bizarre scheme to bilk more than $95,000 from a World War II veteran whose lawn he mowed. On Monday, Thomas' world could not have gotten more real - sentenced to 161/2 to 33 years in prison by a Philadelphia judge for draining the life savings of 93-year-old Raymond Campbell. Thomas, 49, who knew Williams and his family growing up in the same Cobbs Creek neighborhood - but who looks nothing like the city's top prosecutor - sucked in his breath as Common Pleas Court Judge Rayford A. Means imposed the maximum possible sentence.
March 26, 2015 |
A mother reported missing since June might have been the victim of foul play, Upper Darby Township police said Thursday. Amanda DeGuio, a mother of 3- and 5-year-old girls, was last seen by family members in late June when she walked out of her mother's Drexel Hill home. "Amanda should have been heard from," said Michael Chitwood, superintendent of Upper Darby police. "I hope we can get her back," he added, noting that she has a history of addictions to prescription drugs and heroin.
March 10, 2015 |
Tax time can be especially stressful for military families. But servicemen and women are allowed extra time to file and are eligible for free filing help. If you're serving outside the United States (including Puerto Rico) as of April 15, 2015, you're granted an automatic two-month extension to file tax returns. If that's not enough time, by submitting Form 4868 to the IRS, you can extend filing by an additional four months, according to the American Armed Forces Mutual Aid Association.
February 17, 2015 |
Tax filers, don't worry if you get a phone call, a text, or an e-mail from the Internal Revenue Service. It won't be from the IRS. It will be a scam artist. "We always tell our clients . . . the IRS never e-mails and they never text you and they don't call out of the blue," said Larry Orr, director in the tax department of CBIZ MHM in Plymouth Meeting. "These are scams looking to steal your information. " One client received a phone call supposedly from the IRS "threatening to put him in jail if he didn't pay right away," Orr said.
February 5, 2015 |
A FORMER Philadelphia Police clerk and her husband were arrested yesterday for allegedly stealing three ATVs that cops had confiscated from illegal riders. Sharon Hammitt, 45, and her husband, John, 44, of the Far Northeast, were charged with theft, forgery, misapplication of entrusted property, securing execution of documents by deception, identity theft, unsworn falsification and tampering with public records, according to the District Attorney's Office. Sharon Hammitt had worked since January 1989 as a clerk in the Auto Pound Unit, where she was responsible for keeping records of vehicles brought to the pound and those then sent to auction or salvage yards, the D.A.'s office said.
August 8, 2014 |
THE STATE Attorney General's Office arrested two Philadelphia men, a Montgomery County woman and a New York man yesterday for running a "grandparent scam," in which they allegedly bilked at least $162,600 from 11 senior citizens in eight states. The suspects also are accused of trying to steal $37,325 more by snookering victims into thinking they were paying to help troubled grandchildren, according to the Attorney General's Office. One woman from Texas allegedly was defrauded of $64,900, according to the office.
July 18, 2014 |
Penn Medicine Tuesday announced a data breach involving receipts from Penn Medicine Rittenhouse that were stolen last month from a locked office in Pennsylvania Hospital. Notifications of the theft were sent to 661 patients Monday, said Susan Phillips, a senior vice president and spokeswoman for the health system. She said no arrests have been made. There have been no instances of identity theft related to theft. Phillips said that was a "very low risk. " Many of the receipts were found on hospital grounds.
June 14, 2014 |
A former social worker and three employees of a residential-care facility for the disabled have been charged with selling the identities of children in their care to help others cheat on their taxes - a scheme U.S. Attorney Zane David Memeger described Thursday as "truly despicable. " Federal prosecutors unsealed an indictment accusing Gebah Kamara, 46, of Sharon Hill, of stealing personal information from several foster children he encountered while working for Catholic Social Services, the charitable wing of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
June 13, 2014 |
A DARBY tax preparer has been charged with stealing the identities of foster children to falsely use their information on tax returns for his own benefit, according to an indictment unsealed yesterday. Momolu Sirleaf, 34, of Wycombe Avenue, owned and operated I.E.S. Tax Services, of Darby. According to the indictment: Sirleaf obtained the names and Social Security numbers of kids in the foster-care system. He used their information to falsely add them as dependents on some of his clients' returns "to generate fraudulent refunds, some in excess of $8,000.