Woman Twice Falls Victim to Same Scammer - WBAY

Target 2 Consumer Alert

Woman Twice Falls Victim to Same Scammer


Millions of consumers have been victims of identity theft and it can be a long and grueling process to recover from it.

But imagine clearing your credit reports to only be re-victimized by the same suspect.

"It's an ongoing thing. They steal your identity. It destroys your life."

Maria Chen had her identity stolen online and the suspect took everything.

"He had withdrawn all of my money out of the bank and opened up credit cards in my name," said Chen.

Maria's bank alerted her to the theft. When she found out her money was gone and her credit destroyed, and she was angry.

"My credit is still messed up because of him."

Maria immediately went to police.  They were able to track down the suspect and arrest him.
She also put alerts on her accounts. But when the suspect got out of jail he was able to use her personal information yet again.

"The bad guys are calling in with all the personal identifying information of the victims," said Carla Menendez, U.S. Postal Inspector.

Once they do that, they can get access to your credit card account.
They can add themselves as users, get their own card with their name on it and start charging on your account.

The vicious cycle starts all over again.
Some advice from postal inspectors: safeguard your personal information at all times.

"One thing we always recommend is to check your credit once a year to make sure no fraudulent activity has happened," said Menendez.

"I've been trying to get my life back again so I can continue on, but it's been very hard," said Chen.

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