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Identity Theft

NEWS
March 13, 2013 | By John P. Martin, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A Chester County couple paid hospital workers to steal patients' personal information, then used it in a scheme to steal $1.7 million in tax refunds, prosecutors said Tuesday. The pair, Rafael Henriquez Polanco and Yanira Lopez, pilfered the identities of least 144 people, including patients at Community Hospital in Chester and Crozer-Chester Medical Center in Upland, between 2008 and 2011, according to charging documents filed in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia. Prosecutors said Polanco, 30, and Lopez, 27, paid hospital workers to steal confidential forms that listed patients' names, birth dates and Social Security numbers, then used the information to file fraudulent returns.
NEWS
March 6, 2013 | By Mari A. Schaefer, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Chester County police knew something else was amiss when they saw the driver of the car suspected in a hit-and-run crash throw credit cards out the window - lots of them. David Carroll and Rochelle Fraser, both of South Jamaica, New York have been charged with identity theft, forgery, theft and other related crimes, according to the West Whiteland Township police. On Jan. 25, Carroll was allegedly involved in a hit-and-run accident on North Pottstown Pike in Exton. Police saw Carroll's car traveling south on Route 100 after the crash.
NEWS
February 23, 2013 | By Frank Kummer, Breaking News Desk
A Southwest Philadelphia man has been sentenced to 2 to 4 years in prison for stealing the life savings of an elderly woman suffering from Alzheimer's disease. Antar Thomas, 32, will also serve 5 years probation after his sentence and pay $35,000 in restitution. The District Attorney's Office said that events began in early 2009 when Thomas befriended Lillian Drake, and an 82-year-old member of his church. Thomas eventually moved into her home, and her health began to decline.
NEWS
February 21, 2013
DEAR HARRY: I'm a young, married guy whose mother got hit with identity theft a year ago. It was a problem, but it got straightened out with zero loss to her. It was emotionally aggravating, however, and she did need a visit to her doctor. I want to avoid that as much as possible. I see all kinds of ads for companies that will do that for me, but they seem to be more about boasting than protecting. There have to be things I can do for myself. Help! WHAT HARRY SAYS: The most important thing is to be alert so you can catch a stolen identity before it gets too far. Get an annual credit report from each of the major reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.
NEWS
February 2, 2013
A former Pennsylvania Department of Transportation supervisor has been convicted by a Chester County jury of creating fake driver's licenses for criminals using the identities of innocent people. Khalif Abdullah Ali, 44, worked at the PennDot driver's license center in Frazer and used his position to make fake licenses with the photos of wanted criminals. One of the criminals was caught and testified against Ali. Others remain at large. Ali was convicted Wednesday of identity theft, tampering with public records, computer trespass, and related offenses.
BUSINESS
January 25, 2013 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
In the cat-and-mouse game that pits Internet attackers against everyone else - from ordinary computer users to super-secure financial institutions and governments - the cat is lately looking a lot more ferocious. "Cyberwar" is no longer just a sci-fi concept. Just ask the Iranians who discovered in 2010 that their uranium-enrichment program had been at least partly disabled by the Stuxnet computer worm, or the malware researchers at Russia's Kaspersky Lab who last year added viruses known as Flame, Gauss, and Shamoon to the list of known cyberwar weapons.
NEWS
January 23, 2013
IDENTITY THEFT IS a crime that's easy to dismiss. Until it happens to you. Just imagine: You've filed your tax return and are eagerly awaiting your refund. It's money you desperately need to pay some bills or buy whatever you've been hankering for. But then you get a notice from the IRS saying that your return has been rejected. You won't be getting a refund because it already has been claimed. You've become a victim of identity theft. Now, identity theft becomes very real. And it's getting frustratingly real for a growing number of taxpayers.
NEWS
January 22, 2013
D EAR HARRY: I do a lot on my computer, but not my banking. Yesterday, I received an email that had all the indications that it came from my bank, requesting my birthday and Social Security number as a result of "continuing review of our accounts for identity theft. " I was ready to comply when my wife gave me the amber light. I tried to reach someone at my bank by telephone, but I only got to an office that could not help me. They "could not transfer me to another service. " I then went to my branch office, and the manager said that the email was not something she knew about.
BUSINESS
December 31, 2012 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
Sure, you can vow to exercise more in 2013, or to be a better parent or child, or to improve your performance at work or school. All worthy goals - and likely stuff you already try to do, perhaps with frustration at your own foibles. So how about adding some modest but easily achievable goals. Here's a list of three Realistic Resolutions for 2013 that won't make you a better person or save the world. But do them and you might save a little money or reduce your risks as a consumer.
NEWS
December 17, 2012 | BY REGINA MEDINA, Daily News Staff Writer medinar@phillynews.com, 215-854-5985
BAD NEWS CAME in pairs for Bok Technical High School on Thursday. The school community learned that the 74-year-old school was recommended for closure by Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. Meanwhile, its former school operations officer was arrested for allegedly embezzling $27,000 from student activity funds, according to court records. Zara Sims, 41, of West Philadelphia, was hit with felony charges that include forgery, identity theft and theft by deception, according to records.
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