Safe from Scams: duped by a financial advisor
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- It may be obvious that you shouldn't share your personal information with a stranger. But what about someone you know and trust?
Surveillance pictures show Andrew Myers in the grocery store with his young son. These photos helped postal inspectors link the former financial advisor to more than 57 cases of identity theft.
"He stole clients information and identity profiles from both his customers and his fellow co-workers and then performed changes of addresses and opened various bank accounts in his name," said U.S. Postal Inspector Douglas Biel.
Myers worked for a mutual finance company, selling both investments and insurance but his own quest for money led to his downfall.
"He was trying to live the high life. He was staying in very expensive hotels, he was flying call girls with him out to the playboy mansion and feeding on other's people dime," said Biel.
Judy Cohen didn't know Myers but she was one of his victims.
"You just can't believe a total stranger would target you and steal your identity," Cohen said.
Fortunately, Judy's bank promptly alerted her and her husband that someone was applying for charge cards in their names.
"They could have run up bills, we would have no clue that someone was out spending in our name. No one is safe. It could happen to me again. It could be happening right now," Cohen said.
Judy has a message for all consumers. "The easiest thing to do is not stick your head in the sand - quit pretending that it's not going to happen to you. It will. As economic times get harder, people are getting more desperate."
Judy says she and her husband now have credit monitoring services on all of their accounts and they check every bank statement carefully. As for Andrew Myers, he is currently serving a two-year prison term and was ordered to pay back $35 thousand in restitution.
safe from scams, scams, consumer, jason oliveira
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